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Jon Coaffee

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Jon Coaffee

From the 1970s onwards, Western governments have sought to defend selective urban areas from terrorist attack through a plethora of measures aimed at territorially controlling space both physically and technologically where the disruption to the orderly flow of commerce, or other activities, is minimized. This chapter tracks the changes to the landscape of Britain’s financial heart, the City of London, from the 1990s to the current day, as its leaders and security agents have sought to defend the area from terrorist attack through the construction of territorially-bounded security cordons – so-called ‘rings of steel’ – that can be characterized by regulatory management, fortification and surveillance, which aim explicitly to categorise, divide and control urban space. This chapter also considers how in the post-9/11 era consideration of the ability of cities to continue to thrive against an ever-present threat of terrorism through the enhancement of urban resilience have come to dominate urban security agendas.