By JR on Monday, January 18, 2016
British PM promises to bulldoze Britain's sink estates and replace 'brutal high-rise towers' to end decades of neglect
Architectural determinism again: Complete rubbish. There are big high-rise condo buildings in places like Sydney's Point Piper that are the acme of civilization. Why? Because the position near the harbour attracts wealthy people who pay big money for their home.
It's not the building type that produces sink estates. It is the behaviour of the people who live in them. And welfare clients often behave maladaptively -- which is one reason why they are poor. What is needed to civilize the sink estates is not to pull them down but to kick out the element who behave badly.
Put them somewhere where they can prey on one another and not on the decent majority
David Cameron has vowed to 'blitz' decades of poverty by bulldozing the UK's worst sink estates and high-rise towers to make way for better homes.
As part of a £140m redevelopment scheme, the Prime Minister pledged to demolish 'brutal high-rise' towers and bleak housing in an effort to tackle drug abuse and gang culture.
Making a bid for the political centre ground Tories believe has been abandoned by Jeremy Corbyn, Mr Cameron said decades of neglect of estates were behind the riots that swept Britain in 2011.
The redevelopment programme is to be overseen by Lord Heseltine, who helped to transform the Liverpool and London docks in the 1980s.
His estate regeneration advisory panel has been told to produce a full blueprint by the time of the Chancellor's Autumn Statement.
Details of the scheme will be set out in a keynote speech being delivered by the premier on Monday, in which he is also due to outline plans to double government funding for relation-ship counselling for troubled families and relaunch a coalition proposal to issue vouchers for parenting classes.
Writing in The Sunday Times, Mr Cameron said: 'Within these so-called sink estates, behind front doors, families build warm and welcoming homes.
'But step outside in the worst estates and you're confronted by concrete slabs dropped from on high, brutal high-rise towers and dark alleyways that are a gift to criminals and drug dealers.
'Decades of neglect have led to gangs and antisocial behaviour. Poverty has become entrenched, because those who could afford to move have understandably done so.'
He promised to transform the worst estates and in some areas it would mean knocking down the houses and starting again.
The Government will inject £140m to rehouse occupants and tear up planning rules to speed up the process.
Tenants and homeowners will be given 'binding guarantees' that their right to a home is protected.
Mr Cameron said three out of four rioters in 2011 came from sink estates.
'The riots of 2011 didn't emerge from within terraced streets or low-rise apartment buildings. The rioters came overwhelmingly from these postwar estates. That's not a coincidence,' he wrote.
The housing developments being targeted reportedly include the Winstanley estate in Wandsworth, south London.
Others could include the Lower Falinge estate in Rochdale, Greater Manchester and Broadwater Farm in Tottenham, north London.
Shadow housing minister John Healey said: 'Any extra to help councils build new homes is welcome but Conservative ministers have halved housing investment since 2010 and are doing too little to deal with the country's housing pressures.
'Another week, another housing announcement. If press statements built new homes the Government would have the housing crisis sorted.
'People simply won't see this small-scale scheme stretched over 100 estates making much difference to the housing problems in their area.'