Thursday, March 15, 2007

ITBA 13- Town Hall Rich List



This vid was made for last night's Your Money programme on the Taxpayers' Alliance Town Hall Rich List (blogged here).

It was filmed in brilliant Global Warming Dividend sunshine outside Red Ken's shiny new billet next to Tower Bridge. And apart from the artillery fire, it was all fairly straightforward. The police did walk past several times checking things out, but contrary to normal practice, they didn't dish out a Stop and Search. We salute their common sense.

As for that Foster landmark building, a number of points:

  • City Hall is the replacement for the old GLC County Hall. That was also sited on a prime Thames-side site, opposite Westminster: in fact the site was so valuable, it's now been converted into luxury flats
  • Ken really did say it was a "great big glass testicle"
  • Cost- the official line is that taxpayers got a bargain with the Testicle, because rather than being owned, it's leased on a rent of only "£36.50 per square foot (£393 per square metre), frozen until 2007". The owners are the developers (CIT) of the whole huge riverside site, including shops and premium offices. Now call me twisted and cynical, but I'm guessing the so-called bargain terms on City Hall are simply to other side of giving away the planning gain on the rest of the development. If I get some time I'll look into it.

PS Tune into 18 Doughty Street at 9pm tonight for the Guide to Citizen Journalism, featuring the Bloke telling Tim Montgomerie how to make your very own polemical- or even wholly impartial- vids. More detailed blog coming.

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