This hideous MSG Sphere thing in Stratford, London, I suppose might look quite cool if it was an animated globe or a big singer. Show the Cup final or Glastonbury or the Masked Singer or something. And maybe they'll start off like that but eventually it will be full of ads.
And not even good ads. Just a ginormous glowing ball of shit motion graphics. The planning renders never show this.
The BT Tower has had a screen for a decade or so now and (from memory) they're not allowed to use it for ads only "information". It was set up in 2010 here's what Russell said at the time.
Or have you seen the "banner" on top of the BT Tower counting down to the Olympics? It's as bright as 1,000 60W bulbs, it's visible from at least eight boroughs, it's got planning permission to be there until 2014.
Eleven years on it mostly shows a rotating BT logo but occasionally, like during the pandemic or after the death or Prince Phillip it shows "public information" messages.
I know it's too late and controversial but we need a better, more digital, empowered CABE for this kind of stuff. The National Infrastructure Commission Design Groupnearly does this and they have some very good people involved but it doesn't really cover this type of stuff.
Sure, this is when they close, but when do they open?
I met a friend at the park the other day at 6am. The park was closed. I always imagined it opened when the sun came up, after all it closes when the sun goes down hence the complicated closing times.
Someone pointed out to me that it's unreasonable to think there are council employees (park keepers?) getting up at 4am to open up the parks. Another friend, an early riser like me, thinks this is perfectly reasonable. It would be a good Richard Scarry job.
On the website it says the park opens at 7:30am but I went past at 6:45am and it was open. So some time between 6am and 6:45am. I shall endeavour to find out and report back.
We live near an LTN, a low traffic neighbourhood. A few streets where they've blocked the roads to cars to make them go somewhere else and make it safer for pedestrians and cyclists. To encourage more walking and cycling. I'm a fan. I appear to be in a minority.
It gets vandalised regularly.
Graffiti and plants pulled up. Occasionally people try to move it with vans. One a few miles away had oil poured over it.
I can't remember another measure introduced by a council that brought about such violent opposition. Maybe the first speed cameras, but that felt less widespread. Poll tax maybe, but that's only administered by the council it was introduced by central government. That was certainly a violent protest. This is an unusually high level of hostility for a council traffic calming scheme.
I think in London these LTNs are primarily introduced to try and solve congestion and pollution but obviously prioritising walking and cycling over cars is also a response to the climate emergency.
Whenever I see these planters vandalised I reflect that LTNs are probably 0.001% of the change required to save the the climate, so is this one thousandth of the violent protest we are likely to see as governments introduce more measures. As governments will inevitably do that in a piecemeal and haphazard way, does that mean the violent protests become never ending.
If you react this way to a 10 minute increase to your car journey how are you going to react when a government says you can only eat meat twice a week. Or you can only heat your home to 18 degrees C. Or only fly once every two years.
At the launch of yesterday's report on the Climate Emergency, by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Prof Tim Palmer said “If we do not halt our emissions soon, our future climate could well become some kind of hell on Earth”.
This is nice. Seen a few of these sorts of notices around since the start of the pandemic. Feels like it's brought out more of a local, community-ness to folks. Maybe. Yes, this is in a nice, leafy, well off neighbourhood, but still in a big city.