The wider world: London Bridge, New Cross, Deptford and beyond...

The Atrium, New Cross. Copyright: Weston Williamson

Part of an occasional series of articles in which we try to write about something other than pubs and delis in the immediate vicinity…

Occasionally, while making our way through the backside of Surrey Quays on our journey to work, we reflect that South East London has its flaws and that, however nice Brockley is, it is also nearby some pretty awful spots.

Here though are some reasons to be cheerful about our wider surroundings:

The Elephant & Castle
£1.5 billion regeneration scheme that involves demolishing large numbers of buildings and replacing them with a high-quality, mixed-use scheme over 170 acres. It will reclaim the area, currently dominated by a roundabout system, for pedestrians. Construction on several of the new parts of the scheme is already underway.

Why is it important?
An important shot in the arm for South East London’s pride and reputation.

The Southwark Cycle Bridge , Rotherhithe
A project by Sustrans, to create a new river crossing for cycles and pedestrians, near the Rotherhithe tunnel. Awaiting results of feasibility study and still a hope that it could be completed in time for the Olympics.

Why is it important?

It will make cycling journeys from South East London to Canary Wharf much quicker and more enjoyable. No one of sound mind would go through the Rotherhithe tunnel willingly.

London Bridge Quarter
The centrepiece of this development will be the EU’s tallest building, London Bridge Tower, a building that will include office space, apartments a hotel and viewing galleries for the public. Demolition of the ugly brown building that currently stands in its place is already underway and it’s financing is nearly finalised. Completion looks likely for 2012-13.

Why is it important?

Together with More London, the development will bring thousands of new jobs to London Bridge, making London Bridge an even more important transport hub and business destination and putting Brockley 8 minutes away from one of Britain’s finest new buildings, with views of the capital from the 72nd floor.

Creekside village, Deptford

The Deptford site is currently being cleared, to make way for a new ‘creative village’, that will offer a new theatre space, artist workshops, apartments and retail. It will also have the benefit of integrating the Laban Centre with its surroundings more effectively.

Why is it important?
We don’t know too much about the merits of this one, but that stretch of riverside is currently a tragic waste and the plans do promise new public spaces, that will open up the waterways and create a new destination within walking distance for many in SE4.

Potters Fields, London Bridge

A recently opened park by Tower Bridge, albeit one still surrounded by building work.

Why is it important?

It adds another dimension to the South Bank river walk.

The Atrium, New Cross

One of many new residential developments in New Cross, reflecting new confidence in the area. Due for completion in 2009.

Why is it important?
We’d argue that New Cross is more important to Brockley than Lewisham town centre and, thanks to Goldsmiths and rail connections; the areas are more closely linked.