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Blog: Nosing The Future

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Saturday found myself an The Plans In My Proposal once again going round East London being nosey... I mean, being ENGAGED with our LOCAL COMMUNITY. This time we were off to look at some NEW PLANS for The International Quarter, the confusingly named (it doesn't seem to be hugely international and it's in two different places) section of The Olympic Park where they're going to build new offices for the V&A, London College of Fashion and various other CULTURAL organisations.

The display was being shown in various places around the area over the course of a few days, but we'd chosen to go and look at this one because a) it was on Saturday b) it was in Stour Space, which we'd heard about but not yet had a nosey round. To get there we walked through Hackney Wick and Fish Island, where we MARVELLED at how quickly things are changing there. We saw the new Hackney Wick station building site then went and had a look around the showroom/offices for a new development of housing. In other words we played with their 3D computer display and pointed at bits we liked on the (rather good) plastic model. I noticed that the showroom looked out onto LOADS of Graffiti across the canal and thought "I bet they wish it didn't" but then realised that they probably LIKE it because it is EDGY.

Stour Space itself was LOVELY, an old building knocked through and re-purprosed, with a cafe, a central exhibition area, and some friendly looking offices and/or studios. I must admit I felt a pang of REGRET that my WRITING CAREER had not taken off as I'd hoped when I had my year off from work a while back, as I would have flipping LOVED to have been able to rent an office in a place like this and then FLIT about having POSH COFFEE while chatting to other CREATIVES.

The exhibition was interesting, as the original plans for LUDICROUS skyscrapers had changed and now featured significantly LESS ludicrous buildings instead. The display said that this was because of consultation with local people but I suspect it was more to do with local planning regulations, and I also wonder whether the revised plans REALLY had buildings MUCH more packed together in order to "encourage closer collaboration between organisations" or whether it's so that they can fit in as much FLOORSPACE without having to go up to 200 storeys.

Either way it all looked quite good, although we did worry that these new buildings would block our view of the Stadium and The Squiggle. We said this to one of the STAFF, who replied "It's always been in the plans!" which is a) true but b) not perhaps the most tactful way of putting it.

Still, they won't be putting in the planning permission until next YEAR so it'll be a while before it happens, and who knows? Maybe by then I'll have an offices in Stour Space and be able to see it all from there!

posted 23/10/2017 by MJ Hibbett

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