The Revanchist City

Dr Tahl Kaminer
Alex MacLaren

MArch 2017/18

thamesmead community commons  /  an-other ‘house of commons’

Thamesmead Community Commons (TCC) is a framework that facilitates multiple scales of autonomy in the life of Thamesmead; from its whole, to the local neighbourhood, to the street or yard.

An-Other ‘House of Commons’ is situated in a proposed future of Thamesmead’s ongoing development, around the year 2040, where the TCC has grown to become a seat of local government. The project imagines the physical materialisation of the TCC in a new administrative and civic complex. This accommodates not only local authority offices and the Commons’ Chamber, but a Peoples’ Archive and a new centre for the reinstated local newspaper, The Earwig. Through this adjacency of programme, Thamesmead is empowered to determine its own future and begin writing its own past, deflecting the projected stigmas that presently and historically negate the lives of its vibrant communities.

The proposal sits at the geographic centre of the new constituency and on an intersection of current physical, political and social boundaries. It reverses the traditional model of the Town Hall through the emergence of the Commons’ Chamber from a space for contention. This repositioning at the junction of public activity facilitates an unfettered opportunity for open and participatory debate, decision-making, representation, protest and celebration.