We are all familiar with the "utopian" towns of the 20th Century. Basildon, Essex, was one of the largest of those New Towns. It was founded in 1949, when Lewis Silkin, the Minister of town and country planning at the time, ambitiously predicted that "Basildon will become a city which people from all over the world will want to visit. It will be a place where all classes of community can meet freely together on equal terms and enjoy common cultural recreational facilities." Nearly seventy years later, Basildon is left with a struggling local economy, splintered communities, and a fraction of the art and culture than what was originally hoped for. "New Town Utopia" is a documentary film that confronts this concrete reality with a question: “What happened when we built Utopia?”
New Towns: The Latest Architecture and News
Basildon's "Failed" New Town: What Happened When We Built Utopia?
Seoul's Dramatic "New Towns" Are Captured in this Photoset by Manuel Alvarez Diestro
As Seoul’s population boomed, apartment blocks became commonplace. Photographer Manuel Alvarez Diestro spent 6 months exploring the city’s new towns, aiming to “reveal in visual terms the expansive nature of urbanization and the transformation of the landscape through the construction of these new housing developments of massive scale.”