How can you build efficient Urban communities, homes, and businesses?

You need to log in to create posts and topics.

New Lanark and Robert Owen

Maybe an innovative community project from the 19th century could be inspiring, or otherwise you may be just interested in history. Two years ago I visited New Lanark, a small village founded in 1786; one of six UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Scotland. A wonderful place that came back to my mind when I saw Scott Adam's sketch of an urban neighbourhood in his Periscope session of 20 August.

Some quotes from Wikipedia about New Lanark and its main influencer:

Robert Owen (...) 1800 (...) was an industrialist who carried on his father-in-law's philanthropic approach to industrial working and who subsequently became an influential social reformer. New Lanark, with its social and welfare programmes, epitomised his Utopian socialism. The town and mills are important historically through their connection with Owen's ideas, but also because of their role in the developing industrial revolution in the UK and their place in the history of urban planning.

"Utopian Socialism" may sound scary, but Robert Owen's legacy is still beneficial for millions today. Among his initiatives are:

  • the eight hour working day
  • the cooperative movement, with shops, banks, insurance
  • free public libraries and museums
  • pleasant landscaped areas the community
  • pension funds
  • infant schools

New Lanark became celebrated throughout Europe, with many statesmen, reformers and royalty visiting the mills. They were astonished to find a clean, healthy industrial environment with a content, vibrant workforce and a prosperous, viable business venture all rolled into one. Owen's philosophy was contrary to contemporary thinking, but he was able to demonstrate that it was not necessary for an industrial enterprise to treat its workers badly to be profitable. Owen was able to show visitors the village's excellent housing and amenities, and the accounts showing the profitability of the mills.

As well as the mills' connections with reform, socialism and welfare, they are also representative of the Industrial Revolution that occurred in Britain in the 18th and 19th centuries and which fundamentally altered the shape of the world. The planning of employment in the mills alongside housing for the workers and services such as a school also makes the settlement iconic in the development of urban planning in the UK.

Owen was a reformer, philanthropist, community builder, and spiritualist who spent his adult life seeking to improve the lives of others. An advocate of the working class, he improved working conditions of factory workers, which he successfully demonstrated at New Lanark, Scotland; became a leader in trade unionism; promoted social equality through his experimental utopian communities; and supported passage of child labour laws and free education for children.

When you are visiting Scotland, I'd recommend to spend a day in New Lanark.

Further reading:


The blight authority is the authority and the platform dealing with the projects like the urban ideas and the urban platform. The log in and the registration of this is for urban community to make the house efficiently and properly.