Tours – Urban Research Project

Location: London
Type: Walking & Cycling Tours
Client: The Architecture Foundation & Open City
Collaborators: Merlin Fulcher, Phin Harper, Vangeli Moschopoulos, Rosie Gibbs-Stevenson, Chloe Spiby Loh, Kate MacIntosh, Fabian Watkinson and many more residents, councillors, architects, participants and other contributors
Duration: 2017 – Present
Status: Ongoing

Okra were commissioned by the Architecture Foundation in 2018 to develop a series of walking tours in the borough of Camden, facilitating a housing research project. The tours are delivered to a public audience and engage with a diverse mix of people, providing first-hand comparisons between the legacy of Sydney Cook’s council architecture department with ongoing developments in Camden and the wider architectural and social context.

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From this research, Okra also delivered workshops for students from a number of universities including Queen’s University Belfast, Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design and Central Saint Martins. Okra have also given lectures as part of the Architecture Foundation’s 100 Day Studio programme, to UCLAN and to Camden Council.

From summer 2020, Okra were invited by Open City to expand on the tours, leading to the development of a cycle tour programme exploring housing across wider London. These tours explore the qualities of postwar estates and discuss the social, political, economic and environmental impacts of regeneration, meeting residents, councilors, activists and the architects of the estates to provide a plurality of voices.