Beyond the Pandemic: An ALT CMD Future

Using Alternative Camden as a springboard for innovation and experimentation, we imagine our future neighbourhoods when its business as un-usual…

Camden High Street during lockdown. Source: AP Photo


Waltham Forest’s Mini Holland, pedestrianised streets.

Commercially, walking and cycling infrastructure was essential if businesses were to re-open with social distancing in place.

Drummond St Neighbourhood Vision, Jan Kattein Architects
Camden Collective, in the temporarily vacant National Temperance Hospital

The high street is now a place for experience: seeing and doing, being immersed in different cultures and involved in new conversations. Shifting our focus has kept our high streets alive and reinstated them as essential community arteries.

Drummond St Neighbourhood Vision, Jan Kattein Architects
Global Generation’s Story Garden makes meanwhile use of a previously disused space owned by the British Library.

People breathe easier, coexist harmoniously and interact with their neighbourhood in a new way.

A sense of mutual support has been developed between business and residents. Source: Jan Kattein Arch twitter

Localisation means that employees are embedded in their home communities, bring new life to their local high streets in the week and spend consciously on the independents that make up a vibrant economy.

We can effectively curate a diverse high street that offers a holistic experience, by enticing the businesses who will make a valuable contribution to the community with business rates relief.

Camden Town’s Hygge Pygge coffee shop has a social agenda, collaborates with carbon-free suppliers and supports local charities.
High Road Leyton, town centre regeneration. Jan Kattein Architects.
  • High quality cycle and walking infrastructure, pedestrianisation where possible
  • Bookable public realm
  • Coworking space models supportive of startups
  • Multi-purpose function of underused buildings
  • Enjoyable, functional civic spaces co-designed with stakeholders
  • Communities empowered to create own climate action plans
  • Relaxed rooftop regulations for tackling air quality and lack of green space
  • Harnessing of lockdown community spirit, expanding mutual aid to independent businesses
  • Localisation: remote working resulting in increased footfall on home high streets and bolster to independent business community
  • Business rates system that rewards those adding value to local community
  • A precedent to include local business and community in commercial offer of major developments
  • Smart Licensing to remove red tape for temporary events



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Camden Town Unlimited and Euston Town.

Camden Town Unlimited (CTU) and Euston Town are the elected organisations behind the Camden Green Loop neighbourhood strategy and climate action community.