Peckham Panel Discussion

Rob took part in a panel discussion at The University of Tokyo reflecting on the Adapting Peckham workshop experience in London last spring (other participants included Hiroshi Ota, Aya Kubota and Maria Claudia de Souza).  The discussion will be transcribed as part of the cSUR publication which is set to be published this April.  The talk covered a range of topics including impressions of Peckham, opportunities and challenges for urban regeneration, the (re)activation of architecture and public spaces, the role of government and the community, and the use of film as a design medium for architecture and urban design students.

Some of the interesting prompts included:

  1. What is (and will be) Peckham’s role as part of greater London?  To what extent is there a unified vision for Peckham’s future and how has that been captured through the council’s recent AAP document?
  2. What do events like the London riots in Peckham say about the quality of the physical space?  How is physical regeneration linked or not to social regeneration and a sense of civic pride?
  3. What will the evolving role of community be with the continued economic situation and the government’s emphasis on Localism?  Whose responsibility is it to create a platform for action?  Who will fund future projects?

Interesting observations from the conversation:

  1. It was evident from the Japanese perspective the most ‘shocking’ non-seized opportunity relates to what little has been done from the council’s point to activate the station as a centre point for the town and that it remains an under-utilized and isolated object.
  2. There was a shared perception that Peckham is distant from the centre of London, suggesting the importance of good transportation links and the perception it carries to the sense of place.
  3. The importance to activate the potential of (and connect) public spaces (e.g. Peckham Square, the flaxyards, the multi-storey car park).


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