The empty retail shops in the CBD of Adelaide are quite noticeable when I walk around the city on my visits from Encounter Bay these days. I interpret them as one of the signs of the difficult economic times associated with Adelaide's slow transition from being an industrial to a post-industrial city. This is still a city undergoing de-industrialization, with a stagnant population, high poverty and unemployment rates and increased homelessness.
I accept that I cannot now photograph the CBD as I used to when I lived in the city and I walked the standard poodles
in the early morning and late afternoon. As the low key commute
involves an hours drive to Adelaide from Encounter Bay on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula coast, so I have to accept whatever light there is when I walk and photograph the city during the day.
Sometimes the facades of the derelict shops are misleading. What looks to be neglected and empty can sometimes contain an office with rows of computers. I just saw a brief glimpse of this when the door of this building was briefly opened.
This building at 30 Compton St in the Central Market precinct used to be an office for the housewives association when I was living in Sturt St in the CBD. It had been empty and unused for a long time. Now it looked as if it houses a digital office for advertising, marketing, publicity, computer programming or maybe even game development. Who knows.
However, this is a small indication of the way that a rust belt Adelaide is becoming a post-industrial city with its increased emphasis on technologies and the importance of information. The imagery associated with the branding of a post-industrial Adelaide reborn through renewable energy, a high-tech economy, and bio-medical centres is attractive; but many of the blue collar workers from the now closed Holden car plant at Elizabeth
will be left out of this post-Fordist future.