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  • Tower blocks.

    Have residential tower blocks been brought up before? Not really something a lot of people would be nostalgic for, many seem deliberately characterless, unlike for the old Coronation Street type row housing they replaced. It seems in the UK and America there was some sort of idealistic hard rule that there be no businesses run on the premises or grounds. This seems hard to believe to me, where the old row house blocks were often capped at the ends by corner shops and pubs. Why wouldn't they want people starting a business out of their homes? I started a couple out of my parents' stand alone house on a residential street, and today with computers in every home I'm sure lots of business might be operated by people in their homes. It seems though this no business rule would explain the spaces then being a black hole filled by illegal, er, business trades (drugs etc.) rather than the idyllic protected communal non-commercial parkland no doubt envisioned by these visionaries. I'm betting the big thinkers behind the whole scheme never lived in their creations for the masses!

    I just watched an early '80s program on the problems with many that were constantly needing fixes and repairs into the millions of pounds. It interviewed some of the workers who 'assembled' them from prefabricated pieces saying how often they didn't fit together as intended, were warped leading to gaps, and the father up you got the greater the effect, and also how as few as 20% of bolts required were used in the steel bracing which when exposed to water that would seep into concrete would rust. They also showed one dramatic tower that had partially collapsed killing five people!

    Tower blocks turned up in drama programs in the '70s and '80s, I remember a Doctor Who with Sylvester McCoy set in one. They often were a sinister place!

    Well, would be interested in peoples' memories of towers, maybe even good memories? They couldn't be all bad (or sinister), there were probably some early ones that were well constructed and thought out.
    My virtual jigsaws: https://www.jigsawplanet.com/beccabear67/Original-photo-puzzles

  • #2
    The infamous partially collapsed tower block was Ronan Point in East London, which was caused by a gas explosion when someone lit their cooker one morning.
    The Trickster On The Roof

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    • #3
      Grenfell tower a few years back

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      • #4
        Yes, Grenfell was a watershed for health and safety in tower blocks - I have to admit that I wouldn't like to live in one of them even if I could see half the city view from my living room window.
        I've everything I need to keep me satisfied
        There's nothing you can do to make me change my mind
        I'm having so much fun
        My lucky number's one
        Ah! Oh! Ah! Oh!

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        • #5
          Imagine living on the top floor the lifts are out of action and you have bags of shopping climbing those flight of stairs.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by amethyst View Post
            Imagine living on the top floor the lifts are out of action and you have bags of shopping climbing those flight of stairs.
            I live close to the top of a block and have no lift! To be fair, it is only four storeys high.
            I've everything I need to keep me satisfied
            There's nothing you can do to make me change my mind
            I'm having so much fun
            My lucky number's one
            Ah! Oh! Ah! Oh!

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            • #7
              Not so good as you get older

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              • #8
                I am just a few years too young for sheltered housing - I am looking at moving from the communal jungle I am in at the moment to a dwelling with my own front door so that my post doesn't feel half a mile away when it is delivered.
                I've everything I need to keep me satisfied
                There's nothing you can do to make me change my mind
                I'm having so much fun
                My lucky number's one
                Ah! Oh! Ah! Oh!

                Comment


                • #9
                  When I've had hotel rooms, or a unit in a big city building, I've often wished to have the top floor as I can't stand much of people making noise above my head. Sometimes I can get that but usually not, even when specifically booking under those terms. I always get the clog dancer with a wooden leg and a large dog it seems upstairs. Of course in an extreme emergency maybe I'd be trapped, and it does get hotter up there in a heat wave.
                  My virtual jigsaws: https://www.jigsawplanet.com/beccabear67/Original-photo-puzzles

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                  • #10
                    I get noise above my head as well - it happens to often that I have got used to it.
                    I've everything I need to keep me satisfied
                    There's nothing you can do to make me change my mind
                    I'm having so much fun
                    My lucky number's one
                    Ah! Oh! Ah! Oh!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      There was some flats on the other side of my town , now demolished , that were only about 8 stories high
                      no lifts just stairs and a series of ramps.
                      we used to frequent the place as kids as the ramps were great for skateboarding down .

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                      • #12
                        I'm okay with a bird walking on the roof above me, or squirrels, they don't stay too long, although the odd time it sounds more like a football game. Woodpeckers however, not good anywhere!

                        When I used to skateboard a little in the late '70s or early '80s maybe I would've loved living in a place with a lot of concrete ramps and park around it. I had my brother's board as a hand-me-down for awhile until a wheel broke, then I had to borrow one for a ride which was less frequent.
                        My virtual jigsaws: https://www.jigsawplanet.com/beccabear67/Original-photo-puzzles

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                        • #13
                          My first skateboard was a plank of wood with one of my sisters roller skates cut in half ,and each half nailed to each end of the plank.

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                          • #14
                            Over half of all tower blocks that were around in the 1970s from the bigger cities like Birmingham and Glasgow have now been demolished.

                            Did they fail due to the concept or did they fail due to the type of people who lived in them? Tower blocks are very popular with middle class folk in some countries but they always seemed to house the lower socioeconomic groups in Britain with a few exceptions like the Barbican. The past 10 years has seen a revival of (luxury?) tower blocks for young professionals in a few cities.

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                            • #15
                              People used to be very house proud of their individual row houses, plus everyone could see the front walking by so it'd be noticed if they weren't keeping up appearances as it were. With those towers I don't think people had near as much to be proud about maintaining them, nor a feeling of permanence sometimes, and if they were shoddily built with corners cut in construction even less so! They put so little into building some you can't criticize people forced to live in them for not putting anything into it themselves.

                              The luxury condo 'craze' has made a lot of places look less unique and more like Miami Florida with flat roofs and balconies on every possible side. Now micro units are common along the lines of something seen only in Tokyo at one time.
                              My virtual jigsaws: https://www.jigsawplanet.com/beccabear67/Original-photo-puzzles

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