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Gentrify this: the pros and cons of urban development



‘Gentrification’ has recently become part of the vernacular when discussing issues around housing, social mobility and inequality. From the storm over the opening of a pricey ‘Cereal Killer’ cafe in Shoreditch to transformation in Hackney, there is growing resentment by some at gentrification pricing out or excluding poorer local residents. Yet on this refreshing panel, filmed at the Battle of Ideas, key speakers argue that this is the healthy development of poor areas which, a generation ago, were being abandoned by population flight. Does growth and development generally improve residents’ lives in deprived areas or simply price them out?

In this debate, chaired by Neil Davenport, the speakers are: Niall Crowley, freelance designer and writer; Laia Gasch, special assistant to Deputy Mayor for Culture, Mayor’s Office; Phineas Harper, deputy director, The Architecture Foundation; David Orr, chief executive, National Housing Federation and Barbara Speed, staff writer, CityMetric, New Statesman.

Related topics: Debates

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