Hoxton has undergone dramatic urban, economic and social transformation during the last twenty years. The development pressure on the area has been steadily increasing, with improved public transport links to the city centre and sustained growth of the creative and digital industries.
Future Hoxton is an interactive consultation project exploring the local area of Hoxton, instigated by William Hodgson, Jan Kattein Architects and PEER Gallery. Central to the project is the conviction that planning concerns everyone and that it must be a creative process that takes place in public. The project encompasses community workshops, public events and a live, three-week model-building showcase. A physical model the size of two kitchen tables is the centre piece for a dialogue with residents, politicians, council officers, school children and local businesses about the future of their neighbourhood. Made from cork, a malleable and sustainable material, the model can be customised and adapted through the workshop process.
PEER Gallery is at the cultural and economic heart of Hoxton’s two wards, featuring the local street market, Shoreditch Library, Hoxton Post Office and Hoxton Hall. Sited in the Gallery’s Shopfront window and drawing on PEER’s community networks, the project is visible to all, actively inviting participation.
Future Hoxton aims to develop innovative and inclusive proposals for the area and instigate a more responsive and visual approach to neighbourhood planning. We found that many local people are prepared to engage with progress, but that there is a deep concern about the scale, form and motivation for change.