In the middle of the 20th century there was projected an unexamined confidence in the power of large scale housing developments to rectify social ills commonly plagued by cities—these two documentaries attempt to grapple with some of the problems (including psychological alienation and racial discrimination) which both arose and persisted within the projects, looking at examples from the United States (America) and Britain (Liverpool).
Run from Race—1964. 30 minutes, directed by George C. Stoney
This program examines the housing situation in Philadelphia where segregation, governmental neglect, blockbusting and other illegal real estate practices have created urban decay. Black residents describe discriminatory practices by landlords and city officals and are seen engaging in community development projects. A sociologist criticizes Philadelphia's re-development plan.
Who Cares—1971. 20 minutes, directed by Nicholas Broomfield
A study of alienation and loneliness in a Liverpool, England housing project for the elderly. Documents the destructive effects of urban renewal. Residents talk about their old neighborhoods and the sense of community that existed there. When they are forced to move to large apartment complexes, the structure of the buildings prohibits them from creating a sense of community.