Monday, July 25, 2005

Convoys Wharf

Thanks to Bob from Brockley for finding an article from the South China Morning Post about Deptford: "Residents in southeast London have mounted a campaign against plans by Cheung Kong (Holdings) to redevelop a 16-hectare site at Convoys Wharf in Deptford into a mixed high-rise residential and commercial complex.The move threatens to stall the Hong Kong developer's ambitions to expand its British portfolio. Cheung Kong and its ports-to-telecoms arm, Hutchison Whampoa, bought the site in May from Rupert Murdoch's News International, the publishing arm of News Corp, for $1.46 billion".

Cheung Kong holdings seem to be in the vanguard of global waterside gentrification - developing luxury accommodation in areas previously reviled by the wealthy because they were full of dockers, sailors, mudlarks and other vanishing urban types. The same company has been involved in similar developments in Vancouver as well as in Hong Kong itself. The interesting Hong Kong anarcho site In the Water obviously knows the company well:

'Hong Kong, with our physical and political environments governed by a ruling class of unrepresentative, unaccountable bureaucrats, and the overriding economic decisions controlled by corporate giants with names like Hutchison, Cheung Kong, and Sun Hung Kai, organisms that will live for decades longer than you and I could ever dream...In our Hong Kong, too, some humans rule and others are invisible. The demolitions continue, the harbor 'reclamations' continue, West Kowloon is commercialized in the name of culture, Mong Kok is smashed for yet another mega-shopping mall, the land and the people are erased until neither land nor people matter, and until... until what, then?'. Sounds familiar.

1 comment:

Bill Ellson said...

The South China Morning Post article reproduced by Bob from Brockley is a very good article but of necessity is a little bit simpler than reality. News International will only receive their £100,000,000 from Hong Kong if they suceed in gaining planning permission for the site. The reference to $1.46 is Hong Kong dollars.