The economic philosophy which was dominant in the English-speaking intellectual world from the 1930s to the 1960s lauded the virtues of central direction and control, and decried market forces and local initiatives. This was even more marked in the discussion of urban policy than in other branches of economics. These ideas were widely implemen ted in Great Britain whereas in other countries they encountered more vigorous opposition; namely in the USA from a sturdy belief in free enterprise and local autonomy and in West Germany from a sophisti cated philosophy of a ‘socially responsible market economy’. Many writers, both in Britain and abroad, argued that what was being implemented in Britain — the sweeping powers of development control, the 1947 development charge’ and later the Land Commission, ‘slum clearance’ and New Towns, rent control and council housing — was a model for the world. But an increasing number of people began to feel that the Emperor’s clothes did not warrant such adulation. ‘Planning’ was frequently oppressive in detail and unimpressive in its total results; the various development taxes did not work well in practice; ‘slum clearance’ brutally destroyed neighbourhoods; council housing had its defects.
KeywordsUrban Policy Rent Control Urban Motorway Council Housing Land Commission
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References: Concluding Thoughts
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