Welcome to the London Architecture Diary, your essential guide to architecture exhibitions and events taking place across the city, brought to you by New London Architecture.
London is a city of high streets, industrial yards and retail parks; here there is a vast economic life. CASS Cities is trying to reveal and quantify this (sometimes overlooked) side of London's economy. We have found everything from the shoe makers of the West End to a small army of car mechanics, community workshops to large volume bakeries. In our search we have documented not only quantities, but stories too. Our research forms a snapshot of economic life in Haringey, Enfield and Waltham Forest. Whilst the insatiable appetite for housing in the capital grows, the nature of areas like these is threatened – London is eating itself, and that's not good. Our proposal is centred around an exhibition of our findings, which will be set within one of the makers’ places we have discovered. From here a series of related events will take place that celebrate an economy of making. An opening party will host a series of short talks, followed by an open discussion that questions the future of the middle Lea Valley. On the following morning, engaging walking tours will take in some of the extent of our research area, setting the scene for our discoveries and allowing snippets of our proposals for the area can be tested in situ. The exhibition will then run independently for a week, giving an opportunity to digest the information on show and further explore the work of Building BloQs. CASS Cities is a bold venture, led by Professor Mark Brearley and housed in London Metropolitan University’s Aldgate campus. Expect to hear strong things from us about London and about cities. Expect to see us making it up as we go along, seizing opportunities, linking up, fanning flames, being entrepreneurial, nurturing and helping. Affecting as well as understanding, being part of it not just watching – following our convictions and using our flair to help make the city better.Building BloQs is a membership based open-access workspace that provides facilities and shared resources for independent designers and makers working in wood, metal, concrete, plastic and paint. Building BloQs is run as a not for profit community interest company. They are currently the only London based provider of pay-as-you-go facilities that cater for the professional industry and develop a social aspect to the workplace. Onsite there is a large workshop with tools and machinery, a hardware supplies shop, spraybooth, photography studio, storage units and cafe.