marcus westbury

my life. on the internets.

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Can arcades fire? (or are old arcades the new laneways?)

May 18th, 2013 55 Comments

A strange obsession of mine of late is the fate of old suburban shopping arcades. I am, as far as i can tell, pretty much alone in believing they’re a rich vein of untapped urban and suburban gold. Or, to put it in language that hipsters, planners and local politicians can reflexively and instinctively respond to […]

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Renewing the new? Early reflections from Docklands Spaces

April 27th, 2013 7 Comments

Renew Australia has been working on a pilot project Docklands Spaces in Melbourne with partners including Places Victoria, The City of Melbourne, and MAB corporation. Docklands, unlike Newcastle or Adelaide, or some of the other places the Renew model has been obviously useful to date is not an old area that has fallen on hard times but […]

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Iterative cities … or why the activity is more important than the act…

December 5th, 2012 19 Comments

Of late much my work has been with cities, towns and communities independently and latterly through Renew Australia. A lot of it involves taking the lessons learnt through Renew Newcastle and attempting to apply them in other communities and contexts. It also involves a lot of training up, talking to, working with and simply observing […]

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US Visit March 2012: The “I won a free trip” tour!

December 15th, 2011 1 Comment

Thanks, most unexpectedly, to the lovely folks at Virgin Australia who are giving me a Free Trip to New York (i won a competition, would you believe it?) i will be heading state-side again early in the new year. I’m keen to meet with and talk cities, urbanism and geekery with audiences of artists, architects, urbanists, […]

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Tiny Revolutions (Meanjin Essay)

January 21st, 2011 No Comments

I am about to head off for 3 and a bit  weeks in the USA so updates may be sporadic for a while. In the meantime if you want to read something longer and chunkier of mine, the good folks at Meanjin have just put my essay Tiny Revolutions from the last issue online. It’s […]

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Cities of Initiative, cities as festivals, hammers and nails

October 18th, 2010 8 Comments

I’ve been meaning to write a long essay about this for a while but stumbled at figuring out exactly who would publish it. So brain dump follows… One of the things that my friend, collaborator, enabler, and founding Renew Newcastle board member Craig Allchin has pointed out to me many times is that is that i used […]

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Renew Newcastle’s coming to America tour

October 9th, 2010 5 Comments

I’ve booked a trip to the USA next year between the 22nd of January and the 13th of February 2011. For the last two years i have been working on Renew Newcastle and i’m keen to touch base with other projects involved in of revitalising cities, urbanism, culture and low cost/ low budget revitalisation of urban […]

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City of Sound on Renew Newcastle as ‘Emergent Urbanism’

February 17th, 2010 5 Comments

Dan Hill of the blog City of Sound fame (and much more besides) has written a piece for the current Architecture Review Australia about ‘bottom up planning’ or ‘emergent urbanism’ as he prefers to call it. In the article and the accompanying blog post he uses Renew Newcastle as a strong example and says some […]

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