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Another day, another plan, another slogan

21 Apr

This is a slogan of the  property development company, Wykeland, eager to make a buck out of redeveloping the old Fruit Market and its surroundings. It is part of a slick marketing operation to sell the (£80 million) plans for not just a hundred or so new homes but a whole ‘urban village’ lifestyle whatever that may be. Well, judging by the company video, what it appears to be is people of a certain age (no older than 27, I’d guess) giggling, drinking coffee, giggling, drinking more coffee, giggling more  (presumably all that coffee sets off a giggle reflex) and so on as they live, work and play and their money pours into the coffers of Wykeland.
The video, so I’m informed, was shot in Shoreditch and Southwark in London as well as in Hull. Those places may well be able to support an ‘urban village’ lifestyle being situated in the middle of one of the greatest and richest urban populations in the world. The old Fruit Market is surrounded by water on three sides and the hell that is Castle Street on the other and is a crusty pimple on the bottom of one of the poorest cities in Britain. It will be interesting to see if the project gets off the ground. 
On a lighter note, if you are into meaningless slogans such as the one above, check out the mind blowing one below. Well D’oh!
 
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Footprint

23 Mar
Our purpose is to promote quality in placemaking 
and the built environment in the Hull and Humber region” 
                                                                                          From Arc-online
And so the great wind powered wigwam that was the Arc has gone and in so doing left a large concrete legacy. The place was set up to develop a sense of ‘Hullness’ (I kid you not) and with this bankrupt mess they’ve certainly attained Hullness of the highest order. I wonder if environmentalists do irony or do they just look for next subsidy? 

As good as gone

22 Jan

After a delay of a year or two (that’s no time at all really) the Arc [ 1, 2, 3 ] is finally being packed up and moved on. The turbines came down a few weeks back and now, the “unique modular buildings” (yes, the estate agents did call them that) have been sold and are on their way out leaving yet another vacant lot.

Stepping Up

23 Feb
Blanket Row
This is the oddly named Blanket Row near the Arc buildings. The building with the windows used to be a Post Office, if my memory serves me right, but it’s empty now and behind that wall lies an empty space. The rest of the street is made up mainly of parking lots, some of which are no longer in use and at the other end there are a few warehouses. It’s a place that could use a bit of regeneration.
If you follow the link on the advertisement you come across a group calling itself Hullbondholders. It’s a collection of 190 companies and individuals who have paid to promote Hull and all things Hull. Now I’m sure they do a magnificent job in this respect with their networking and so on. What struck me as odd, however, was the make up of this group; so many law firms, accountants, media types, communications specialists (?), business coaches (???) and businesses that help other businesses find places to do business and so on and so forth. It’s a whole eco-sphere of creatures, call them entrepreneurs if you must, making a living from each other’s existence but seemingly not actually producing anything tangible at the end of the day. Maybe I’m missing something but whatever it is they are doing none of then seem to want to step up and regenerate Blanket Row any time soon.