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Houses

Through many changes and advances from the original Garden City ideals, published by Sir Ebenezer Howard in his book To-morrow: a Peaceful Path to Real Reform (UK, 1898), the modern housing ideals have changed to reflect the current societies needs. After a huge boom in the housing market followed by an inevitable drop, coupled with high immigration rates, Britain has been left with a major shortage of housing, not helped by the economic downturn, which the National Housing Federation has said to have led to a 30% decline in house building over the last two years (Milligan, 2010).

To combat this shortage there are many large housing estates appearing across Britain. These estates are based on utopian ideas that everyone should have their own house, a space for their car and a small garden which in the ideal world would come with a secure income, an equal lifestyle; these ideals it could be said are becoming akin to the American Dream, particularly after Margaret Thatcher began to sell public housing to it’s occupants.

The estates are designed to house a diverse selection of ages and family sizes with estates often containing a variety from smaller terraced homes to much larger detached houses. The estates tend not to have much variation with each sized house often having just one design, as well as this the larger companies building them often have several sites on going build what is essentially the same development.

This mass production of houses can be seen as another extension of globalization, an ethos that essentially states low costs - high profits. Materials are cheap to purchase, as is the labour; where is the difference between a mass produced low cost Primark t-shirt and a George Wimpey house that tens if not hundreds of other people live in replica’s of?

It is the visual indicators of the low costs - high profit ethos that this project explores.

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