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How can we renew the people in our urban landscapes?

I am struck by religious words used to describe political and commercial aspirations: vision, mission, transformation(al), regeneration and renewal, writes Rev John Matthews, minister of Ruchhill Parish Church in Glasgow.

These are not exclusive terms to be used only for religious purposes, but they do express concepts that have meaning beyond their current usage. The spiritual/physical use of these words forms an axis that is self-evident, but when they are used in connection with social policy or commercial geographical ventures in an urban context, the spiritual content seems to seep away, resulting in the very traumatic human experiences we have had in Glasgow’s recent history.

Take the peripheral housing schemes which deteriorated as those with skills and health moved out, leaving the young, the old and the sick in a community of “the left-behind”. Or the multi-storey blocks with young families and old people being housed without a thought for how life might turn out for them.

Full article at The Herald.

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