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Introduction

There are several interests that need to be protected when social, environmental and political process take place. The four pillars (social, environmental, economic and political process) are core and therefore need to be put into consideration when planners of any city discuss the developmental issues. It has been found out in the growing body of literature including the works of Campbell (1996) on property, resource and development that the four pillars are almost irreconcilable since implementation of one process for example environmental process, may conflict economic process that may eventually interfere with the political and social process. This paper will be in two parts using London as chosen case study. The first part will devote to demonstrate the interplay of the four pillars and how the compromise of other processes by implementing one of the pillar end producing distinct spatial outcomes. The second part will be on the redress of spatial outcomes that can only be achieved through specific planning policy issues and responses.

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Interaction of Social, Environmental, Economic, Political Process and their Spatial Outcomes

The four pillars co-exist and interact in all ecosystem. The ecosystem of reference on this paper is London, one of the most developed cities in the world. Interestingly, the interaction of the four pillars is more palpable in ecosystem that are developed compared with the underdeveloped or developing ones. To that effect, London is expected to experience more distinct spatial outcomes due to intensive interaction between and among the four pillars. An overview on the current status of London compared with the past can help in extrapolation into the interaction of social, environmental, economic and political processes. A good illustration is the survey done by Bentley and Pevalin (2016) that revealed the population of London is on a constant increase due to several factors such as rural-urban migration and immigration due to public amenities and opportunities of employment. Employment opportunities is an economic factor that attract individuals to urbanized areas such as London and end up putting pressure on the housing facilities within an area experienced at the influx.

According to Campbell (2010), such situation will call for construction of more housing units for the increasing population that may end up compromising the environmental process. However, in case no more house units are made, then the house prices will soar. In a report that was made by Andy Dangerfield, a BBC reporter on their website in the year 2014, it revealed London’s house prices rise by more than 20 percent on yearly basis. More so, while relying on the Office for National Statistic figures, Dangerfield revealed that London need 63,000 new housing units each year where only a third are being built (Kiesler & Sproull, 2012). The spatial outcome of such situation is rising number of homeless population, increasing crime rates which is a social problem.

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In one sense, the political process could be part of the problem through the legislations that are made. The social problem at hand is that housing has priced out individuals in London causing increase in number of homeless people. The political process according to Campbell (1996), brings out the property conflicts. Most of the private investors in the such housing and land are politicians thereby having a conflict of interests in reconciling the social problems with the economic processes (Sciara, 2017). More so, to redress the social problems, more houses need to be constructed which is a move the will compromise the environmental pillar in sense that the resources need to be conserved especially by the legislations made by the politicians. It therefore seems that development conflict will arise because of difficulty in reconciling the social equity with the environmental pillar.

Environmental pillar still emerges as one of the compromised of all the pillars. In light of the Heathrow Third Runway expansion, an otherwise good project in placing London on the world best aviation destination, poses a threefold conflict among the four pillars (Wey & Chang, 2016). The first compromise is on the environmental pillar through the noise that exceed the normal decibel on the populace. More so, there will be air pollution through the emission of smog. The second conflict is on the social process where the individual within the perimeter of expansion were relocated to other areas. The relocation of residents of a given area because of infrastructural building comes with social problems thereby causing social process conflict. The third conflict is economical where the expansion come with expenses that are not limited to the project but also compensating the relocated residents with the properties that they had developed. For the budgeting purposes of such project, the 700 homes listed for relocation could have become the victims of under-compensation. It from this angle that the political process sets in through lobby groups.

Spatial Outcome and their Solutions

It can be seen that the major problem in the modern London is housing and increasing cases of homeless population. Approximately 50years ago, according to BBC timeline, in the year 1969 more than three million people in Britain were living in overcrowded and slum like condition that called for re-construction of housing units. The urbanization and stratification of society in modern time has priced out more than 35,000 people within London who are considered homeless while a huge number live in homes that are not suitable for human beings (Wey & Chang, 2016)..   The solution to these spatial outcomes has been the interlinkage with other processes such as environmental, political and economic. The planners for more housing for the increasing homeless population are unable to reconcile the past and the present on the issue of social-spatial segregation (Rabinovitch and Pauly, 2016). To that effect the problem not continue to be endemic but its prevalence increases too. Social-spatial segregation is more in the modern London than 50 years ago as demonstrated by Office for National Statistic figures (Wey & Chang, 2016).

The solution to the spatial outcomes due to the interaction of the four pillars depend on the players in the very pillars (Graham, 2015). One of the laws that can facilitate the redress to this perennial problem is Localism Act 2011 that has devolved the decision making from central government to the individuals and communities at different levels (Hess, 2012. To this effect, communities in London have been given power to affect the lives of people residing in London in positive way through the decision that they make.

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The best move, therefore is for the Local Authority in London to form a multidisciplinary committee that will be tasked with the mitigation of the spatial outcome originating from the interaction of the four pillars (Wey & Chang, 2016). The multidisciplinary committee is necessary because of the tension brought about by the interacting four pillars. Without a harmonizing committee then reconciling the pillars will be difficult. The power given to the multidisciplinary committee by the Localism Act (2011) need to be exercised in a way that the actions taken by it does not compromise any of the pillar or create more tension. This imply that before a decision to make a housing unit is made then members of the committee belonging to environmental pillar, political pillar, economic and social pillar need to have a common ground. The common ground will redress the tensions.

Several means can be used to come with action plans and policies. Benchmarking is one of the means of solving the problem. Benchmarking with other countries that suffer the same social problem as London can help in formulation of solutions. The United State of America is one of the countries that has problem of homelessness. One of the solution proposed and implemented includes federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (Fagan, 2015) which can be a hint to the multidisciplinary committee formed with players from the four pillars. Since they have been given power by the Localism Act 2011 to make decision that affect individuals in London, solution will be made based agreement and benchmarking done.

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