(Photograph by Alan Silvester)

Our Research Associate Professor Rowland Atkinson reflects on the urgent changes necessary for the city to become a fairer and better place for all in a new blog for Verso Books, publisher of his book Alpha City: how London was captured by the super-rich.

Alpha City considers how London was bought and sold by the Super-Rich, and what it means for the rest of us. Who owns London? In recent decades, it has fallen into the hands of the super-rich. It is today the essential World City and has the largest number of wealthy people per head of population. London is the epicentre of the world’s finance markets. Rowland presents a history of the property boom economy. It tells the story of eager developers, sovereign wealth and grasping politicians, all paving the way for the wealthy colonisation of the cityscape. The consequences of this transformation of the capital for capital is the brutal expulsion of the urban poor, austerity, cuts, demolitions, and a catalogue of social injustices. This Faustian pact has resulted in the sale and destruction of public assets, while the rich turn a blind eye toward criminal money laundering to feather their own nests. Alpha City moves from gated communities and the mega-houses of the super-rich to the disturbing rise of evictions and displacements from the city. It shows how the consequences of widening inequality have an impact on the urban landscape.

Read the blog: https://www.versobooks.com/blogs/5082-cacopolis-now