AQA A2 Human Geography Case Studies

Case studies for World cities topic of unit 3

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Urbanisation - Dharavi, Mumbai


Mumbai is a globally important mega city, India's financial centre and area of industry and services, also home to Bollywood film industry
Population: 14 million. Doubled in 40 years, half live in slums (including Dharavi)


-Cramped, poorly built homes
-lack of sanitation
-clean water rationing
-air pollution (heavy road congestion and increased burned waste)


-Redevelopment project announced 2004, replacing slums with apartment blocks. Residents of Dharavi have to have proof of residence since 1995 to get an apartment.
-330 new toilet blocks built in 1995 as part of Slum Sanitation Program
-Rainwater harvesting and filtering
-Public transport improvements

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Suburbanisation - Surbiton, London


-Good transport links to centre of London (for commuters), close to A3
-good quality housing
-wealthy area with plenty of shops and restaurants
-good state schools and plenty of parks (for families)


-70% own at least one car, parked cars cause congestion
-In London Travel Zone 6, meaning it is expensive to travel into central London. Causes congestion as 40% drive to work instead
-House prices are high (£406,000 compared to UK average £226,000) leading to economic segregation


-Road widening and set delivery times so that delivery bays are parking bays for the rest of the day, easing congestion
-Campaign to reclassify Surbiton to Travel Zone 5 to make it cheaper
-Secure bicycle storage units to encourage people to cycle to work instead of driving

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Counter Urbanisation - St Ives, Cambridgeshire


-70 miles north of London
-Good road access and rail links to Cambridge and London
-Population was only 3800 in 1961, now 16,400


-Traffic congestion at rush hour on A14 (main commuter road to Cambridge)
-House prices increased by 120% between 2000 and 2010 causing economic segregation between commuters and locals
-Demand for housing meant building on the floodplain of the River Great Ouse leaving more at risk
-Change in demographics puts pressure on schools as younger people move in.


-2010 - Approved plans for 200 new homes in St Ives, at least 75 of these would be affordable housing
-Plans to expand primary schools in the area
-£8.8 million spent on flood protection- embankments and flood walls
-A guided busway linking St Ives to Huntington and Cambridge built to reduce congestion

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Re-urbanisation - London Docklands


-Urban decline in '60s (deindustrialisation). By '80s 150,000 lost jobs and 20% housing was not fit for living in. London became derelict.
-London Docklands Development Corporation (LDDC) set up in 1981

+ Impacts

-Economy boosted, enterprise zones attracted 2700 businesses creating 85,000 jobs by 1998
-24,000 new homes built
-New schools and colleges built and existing ones improved
-Docks refurbished to be more attractive to residents
-London Docklands Light Railway opened in 1987, cutting journey times to Central London down to 20 mins

- Impacts

-Conflicts between original residents and new, more affluent residents. Managed with 40% of new housing sold at an affordable price to original residents
-Original residents didn't have the skills necessary for the new jobs available (service industry and banking). Managed by setting up centres to gain basic literacy, numeracy and IT skills. Trained 16-18 year olds basic electronics and programming to gain work experience. Also LDDC supported Skillnet- a job agency  which helped to provide skills as well as finding work

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Gentrification - Notting Hill, London


-Industrialisation brought workers from rural areas. Landlords built terraced housing for workers to rent but became rough and deprived in the '50s
-Abolition of rent control allowed landlords to charge what they liked, forcing poorer residents out and made them able to improve their properties.


-Rapidly increased property prices, original residents couldn't afford rent and had to leave. Some houses on Portland Road now cost up to £3.5 million
-Rent on businesses also rocketed, meaning original residents also lost their workplace
-Communal gardens attracted families as open spaces are rare in the city, also close enough to commute to work
-Celebrities live there giving it an atmosphere and attracting tourists
-Fashionable and expensive restaurants in the area such as Veronica's serving historical dishes again attracting tourists

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Partnership Schemes - Hulme City Challenge

Reasons to Develop

-High rise flats built in the '60s were badly designed and became highly deprived. Unemployment and crime was high.


-Planned to build 3000 new homes with new infrastructure that were better designed - streets and squares, 2 storey houses and low rise flats - this gave a community feeling and increased attractiveness, bringing new residents to Hulme
-By 1995, most of flats demolished and 600 new homes built and 400 refurbished - Crime greatly reduced, people felt safer
-Businesses, shops and services encouraged to move there - creation of new jobs and therefore the multiplier effect
-Transport links into Hulme city centre were developed - allowing less affluent to get around and find work


-Hulme still has half its residents living in social housing
-House prices have increased making it harder to get on the property ladder

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Property Led Regeneration - Thames Gateway


-Make sure land and buildings are being used and not left derelict
-Encourage existing and new industry to develop
-Create an attractive environment
-Improve housing and social facilities


-New town centres with improved transport and a new Crossrail station
-Renevation of education services
-Sustainable housing development at Barking Riverside providing 10,000 new homes with health centres, schools, leisure and extensive green areas.
-East London invested £210 million by 2011.

Successes and Concerns

-Growing population,12% increase in 10 years. Improvements in pupil's educational achievements - 46% now getting higher (A*-C) grades compared to 29% previous year
-LTGDC accused of not listening to residents' opinions eg Nightclub built despite objections

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Retailing - Trafford Centre, Manchester


-Opened in 1998 on a brownfield site 5 miles from Manchester. Site covers 150 acres of land and cost £600 million to complete.
-Largest catchment area for any shopping centre in the UK, more than 8% of UK's population live within 45 minute drive and more than 30 million visit per year
-200 shops, 1600 seat food court, 20 screen cinema, crazy golf, ten pin bowling, laser quest and indoor climbing wall
-Good road connections, close to M60 for those coming from outside Manchester and M602 for those coming from city centre. 11,500 free car parking spaces and a traffic control system
-Indoors and air conditioned for all weather shopping
-Long opening hours- until 10pm Mon-Fri, 8pm Sat and 6pm Sun


+Supports local community projects and charities eg Royal Manchester Children's Hospital
+Provides work experience for local schools
+8000 employees that all receive healthcare benefits and childcare vouchers
+Still growing, attracting more customers and creating more jobs
-Congestion is a problem with majority of customers driving to it - improving public transport to it to reduce traffic
-Has impacts on surrounding towns causing decline in these areas - these town centres often fight back  with reduced parking charges etc

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Redeveloping Urban Centres - Manchester City

Reasons + Aims

-1996, an IRA bomb damaged the CBD including the Arndale Centre and the Royal Exchange Theatre.
 -Building of the Trafford Centre brought even fewer people to the CBD
-Aimed to: Re-design and rebuild CBD to create safe, accessible centre for north west region, where people come to live, shop and for entertainment. Also to make sure success would last and cause long-term investment.


-Old buildings renovated eg Corn Exchange was internally rebuilt and is now an upmarket mall. New upmarket department stores built eg Selfridges. Printworks Entertainment Complex built on site of an old printing press, has a multi screen IMAX cinema, gym, restaurants and bars.
-Other buildings constructed and renovated for new shops, bars, restaurants and luxury apartments. Old industrial buildings turned into residential properties.
-Large areas pedestrianised


-Redevelopment is ongoing. Between 2003 and 2009, population doubled to over 19,000, increased tourism, retail makes extra £300 million per year
-However some are still on low income and can't afford to live in CBD

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Sustainable Transport - Manchester Metrolink

Reasons and Aims

-Congestion in Manchester was a problem, getting around was difficult and this detracted visitors.
-Aimed to reduce the number of cars on the roads by creating an affordable, reliable, accessible, sustainable alternative that will encourage people to use public transport


-Tram service has 65 stops in 70km of track, serves 18 stations on rail network and 6 in the city centre, making it easily accessible and integrated with main railway
-Every 5 minutes at peak times and 12-15 mins at less busy times and therefore make 19 million journeys per year. This makes it accessible and reliable (if it makes these times)
-£4.20 for a day ticket making it affordable to all and £1.4 million expansion and improvement planned, showing room for constant improvement.
-Eco friendly trams, reducing CO2 making it more sustainable than cars


-Scheme has saves at least 3.5 million car journeys per year, showing that people are using it and the city is becoming more sustainable
-Shows that it is reliable, accessible, affordable and reduces CO2, achieving all its aims

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Sustainable Waste - Cambridge

Reasons and Aims

-The UK's average landfill waste was very high, local communities are trying to improve this to create more sustainable waste management.
-Aimed to increase their recycled waste to 50% by 2008.


-9 recycling centres currently in operation in Cambridge with one Mechanical Biological Treatment (MBT) plant which sorts landfill waste from recyclables. This was introduced with a £730 million contract for recycling and composting
-Introduced hefty fines for flytipping
-Council work with schools to educate the importance of recycling
-This attracted £35 million public funding allowing improvements and expansion to be made


-Cambridge recycled 51% in 2009 (compared to 39% UK average), achieving their aim, if not a bit late.
-However, £7 million is still spent on landfilling and £1.5 million worth of clothes are thrown away which could be sold for charity

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