One of the boasts which have been trumpeted ad nauseam for & during this year of culture by the local media & the civic clowns on Castle Street concerns the rising number of residential apartments in the city centre. It is, indeed, true that the number of [upper middle class] people residing in postcodes L1, L2 & L3 has risen exponentially in the last decade and a half. As I savoured a lunchtime pint at the Albert Dock last Saturday I took in the changing face of the city's waterfront & the high rise developments, one of which appeared to have a helicopter perched on its roof. However, Scouse exceptionalism cannot & does not extend to the housing market & the credit crunch that has found its way across the Atlantic.
Global economic factors have hit this nascent phenomenon: (http://www.liverpooldailypost.co.uk/liverpool-news/regional-news/2008/05/08/liverpool-luxury-flats-fail-to-tempt-buyers-64375-20878283/ ).
Needless to say, other cities desperate to re-invent themselves also face this cold blast of market conditions (repossessions of upmarket apartments in the middle of Manchester proceed apace).
However, Liverpool, more than most cities, saw the repopulation of its centre as living proof of its civic & economic recovery. It would be bitterly ironic if 2008 witnessed the start of a reversal in the local property sector.