Thamesmead is a town that was established in the 1960s with the intention of being a ‘model city,’ built with utopian architecture, green spaces and waterways along the banks of the river Thames. Today, over 45,000 people live in the area (measuring 750 hectares) and 65% of the land is owned by Peabody housing association. The area has the space and potential for 20,000 new homes. Peabody’s investment, as well as other large-scale projects like TfL’s installation of the Elizabeth Line at Abbey Wood, is bringing many new opportunities to Thamesmead.
Urban regeneration can contribute to transforming inhabitants’ health and wellbeing as well as their relationship with, and perception of, place both internally and externally. However, not all regeneration initiatives measure impact holistically or track the challenges faced by residents. Peabody’s mission is to improve, grow and look after Thamesmead for the long-term. Because Peabody owns much of the land, housing and retail, and natural spaces in the area, it is in the unique position to take a holistic, area-wide approach to its regeneration. To demonstrate its commitment to improving outcomes for the community, Peabody has engaged Arup, TSIP and the University of Greenwich to jointly manage the Thamesmead Evaluation Framework.
The PhD student researcher will make a significant contribution to the overall evaluation of the Thamesmead Plan, and will be provided with an opportunity to carry out research with practical implications. The research focuses on public space, culture, arts and heritage and community cohesion, paying particular attention to the lived experience of place.
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