I suppose that's some sort of shorthand for "soulless, empty, windblown desert of a place with anonymous plateglass mega-buildings"
If anyone takes a walk around the developments by Wandsworth Bridge (especially "Battersea Reach" they will know what I mean.
Empty of human life, little to break the monotony of flat-entrances, well clipped sterile lawn areas that nobody walks on, no kids playing or giggling around, few if any shops, vast plateglass walls showing closed curtains, verandas that show the standard table and two chairs that never are moved but stand in uniform positions outside flat after flat as the eye climbs up the cliff face of each aspect.
Do human beings live there? Apparently not. They may own properties that cost them ££££ but they rarely seem to live there with entrances controlled by bored concierges, windows and verandas triple-locked, curtains closed and apartments hermetically sealed against the outside world - you couldn't design a more alienating,depression inducing environment, it seems custom built to engender despair and dark thoughts of ending it all,
They might as well lift these developments and place them on the Moon , so much are they a part of their environment!
I remember when Chelsea Harbour was developed 35 years ago. Architects drawings showed people walking, chatting, kids playing, dogs sniffing, pedestrians enjoying the harbour. That was how it was originally planned and several fantastic restaurant were opened attracting crowds of people from outside.
Then the owners complained about the noise and the traffic (and no doubt Hoi Polloi that strolled about there)...barriers went up...through traffic restricted to owners and taxis...even if they did get in cars could only park in exorbitantly expensive car parks.
Result? People stopped coming, restaurants failed and closed and the place now resembles the no-mans land between North and South Korea...
...but the owners got their peace and quite and exclusivity, shame they didn't build a ten meter razor-wired wall to complete their gated and sterile environment...I'm sure they are tempted!
You can tell I'm impressed with these soulless developments!
What are they doing to London?
These spaces should be integrated and lively, pedestrians and visitors should be encouraged, variety and diversity should be "planned in", super-rich ghettos should be avoided at all costs!
Really ... I sound like Wolfie Smith