A world built for the rich

Hostile architecture heralds the transformation of public space into a class war zone.


“Where more inclusive societies, like that of Denmark, build parks and public spaces with a view to invite and be enjoyed by as many as possible,┬ácountries where extreme inequality is becoming the norm, such as the UK and the US, opt for hostile and disengaging urban scenery.

We are right to be worried about these new realities. Gated communities and hostile architecture are brushed aside as temporary issues at best, to be fixed when “times are better”. But what we should be worried about is not solely if we are building a world to be enjoyed only by the rich in the short term, but also what that world might look like in the long term.

To us, such city furniture may look simply as a temporary manifestation of bad character, brought on by a prolonged economic crisis. But to those that will inherit them, they may look like no more than war zones; financial battlefields, from which humanity is totally absent.”

Yianis Baboulias on hostile architecture and the transformation of public space into a class war zone, for Al Jazeera English.

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