An interesting contact ... (See comments thread in the post below this).
I was taken aback by all the details to be seen on the skyscrapercity site about the 'gold rush' of developers, eager to liberally cover all of the Lower Ouseburn and adjoining areas of Newcastle's Quayside with exactly the kind of buildings I most dislike; meretricious off the peg Modernism, whose only virtue would be the ease and low cost of erecting these 'cash flow' options. The guiding dead hand of English Estates is everywhere, like tin foil and about as robust. Just as with the planned and abandoned schemes for the former paint factory site next to Battlefield, most of the sites have been subject to several development proposals which have been through 'multiple choices' – offices, then trendy apartments and now student housing – the latest of late 'quick bucks' to be had in property development. Nothing I saw had any relationship with the existing Ouseburn or the characterful history of this corner of Tyneside.
Another wave of crass development awaits Newcastle it seems, held back only by the Credit Crunch. Not all bad news on the economy then.