World Cities - characteristics and causes of urban decline

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World Cities
Urban decline and regeneration: Characteristics and causes of urban
Urban Deprivation:
Inequalities occur in all urban areas enormous contrasts in wealth can be found over
relatively small distances. The wealthy and poor concentrate spatially a form of social
Developers, builders and planners build housing on blocks of land with a particular
market in mine
Wealthier groups can choose where they live
Wealthy pay premium prices for houses well away form poor areas with pleasing
environments and services as well as quality schools and parks
Poor have no choice ­ have to live where they are placed in welfare housing or if
they can find a cheap place to rent
Changing environments
Housing neighbourhoods change overtime
Georgian and Victorian houses, built for large families are too big for the average
UK family ­ many have been converted into multiple apartments for private renting
to people on low incomes
Former poor areas are being gentrified
`Right to buy' legislation 1980 transformed many council estates ­ houses bought by
occupants and improved
Ethnic dimension
Originally come to the country as new immigrants
Suffer discrimination in the job market so are unemployed or only hold lowpaid
Only able to buy cheap terraced housing or have to rent privately
Newly arrived immigrants concentrate in poor, multicultural areas
Measuring Inequalities
Primary data ­ quality, density and condition of housing and nature of the physical
and social environment
Secondary data ­ census to assess deprivation levels ­ may include poverty,
income, health, possessionscars
The poorest areas suffer multiple deprivations ­ social, environmental and economic
The inner city
High population outmigration figures
Boarded up shops
Empty and derelict properties
Closing of schools, particularly primary schools, and low levels of education
High levels of unemployment
High incidence of crime, vandalism and graffiti
Low levels of participation in local democracy

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Causes of innercity decline
More than 4 million people live in the inner cities of the UK ­ these areas are typified by
economic decline, personal poverty, social problems and environmental decay
Economic decline
Widespread movement of employment away ­ fall in traditional industries
Decline in manufacturing accompanied by growth of service industries ­ but didn't
compensate massive losses in manufacturing
In 80s & 90s jobs in services in innercity areas fell by &% whilst there was a
national increase by 11%
Deindustrialisation was accompanied…read more

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Urban decline elsewhere: Peripheral council estates
Local authorities built estates on the edge of urban areas to house overspill
population and people who needed rehousing because of innercity slum clearing
Consisted of uniform council housing ­ semidetached, red brick with or without
rendering, metal frames windows, small gardens, limited garaging and
coloursequenced front doors
Also towers block and maisonettes made of prefabricated materials
Cheap way for authorities to meet housing demand
Planning controls limited and construction was done in great haste
Communities, the size of…read more


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