Urban regeneration encompasses many facets. This includes renovating the overall landscape, restructuring physical layout, regenerating culture, creating jobs and rebuilding an overall sense of communal identity.

Urban renewal is not a new concept. A lot of cities have been reinventing themselves for a variety of reasons and in many different ways. For many of them, it means creating more motorways, transport systems and roads. Others focus more on building new homes, commercial areas and industrial sites.

To help you better understand the different aspects of urban regeneration, here are some of the most common reasons as to why it is done:

People Empowerment

Regeneration projects are not only about creating jobs and helping people learn new skills to pursue careers. They are also meant to go beyond implementing business development and improving local economies.

France’s Politique de la Ville, for example, tackled problems related to deprived neighborhoods. The policy aims to reduce territorial disparities within urban communities by mobilizing local and national stakeholders. If successful, this will create a balance within French cities, which will be beneficial to all residents.

Another example is Britain’s Urban Renaissance. The ongoing project also seeks to improve the lives of the deprived and improve quality of life in general. In particular, the project aims to strengthen community development and participation. Improvement in services such as health, education and safety is also give priority.

Culture Regeneration

Britain’s example is notable as it also seeks culture regeneration and for this, the renewal projects happening in its seaside towns is commendable. The attractions in these once stylish holiday resorts have been eclipsed by other vacation spots, leading to empty shops and high unemployment rates as a result.

Culture-led regeneration hopes to bring life back into these holiday destinations once more. Walk along the coast and you will see the beginnings of a £37 million cultural improvement initiative beginning from 2008. Fantastic buildings, art and sculptures are now seen on the coastline. New galleries have thrown their doors open. One should not miss the revived towns of Tate St. Ives and Hastings when visiting the area.

Strengthening One’s Economic Potentials (Education Service and Infrastructure Development) – the Manchester Example

Manchester was a dying city in the 1970s. After the Second World War, the city underwent a devastating process of deindustrialization. This was largely due to economic globalization and the decision of England to improve the economic position of London. In the period from 1971 to 1981, the neglected city of Manchester lost about 50000 jobs and its population decreased nearly 18%.

Leaders needed to redefine the Manchester’s role and improve its position in the global market.  For this, they made use of the concept of “monopolies of places”. These are the unique qualities of a city granted by local assets and distinct location.

Using the city’s location potentials, connectivity to other neighboring cities was developed. They created a network of roads to many economic centers. Now Manchester is connected to all the cities in the north and Europe’s “blue banana”. Specific developments include the Northern Hub and improvement of the city’s international flight connectivity.

Manchester is also now enjoying economic benefits from its world-class research centers. The strategy was to strengthen the research capabilities of the city’s universities, resulting to an influx of skilled professionals from all over the world. These experts are one with the locals creating innovative ideas that seek to further fortify Manchester’s political and economic positioning.


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