RETAIL AND URBAN CHANGE

Towns and cities are dynamic - they are changing rapidly.  Planners and architects are planning for today and tomorrow, with a viewpoint to improving our lives through renewal and development.

We see it happening around us, like the changes in Cardiff city centre. Some of the changes are at the easrly stage of planning as designers play with ambitious plans to create sustainable and green cities for the future.

 

BURGESS MODEL: A model that suggests that towns grew outwards from the centre in a concentric pattern. This means that older buildings are closer to the centre, whilst newer, more modern buildings are closer to the edge.

Burgess

 

 

 

 

 

 

ZONE A - CENTRAL BUSINESS DISTRICT

  • High multi-story buildings
  • Expensive land values
  • Shopping malls
  • Cultural/historical buildings e.g. museums and castles
  • Offices, banks, administration buildings
  • Bus and railway stations
  • Car parking
  • Central location
  • Most accessible for workers and visitors

ZONE B - INNER CITY / TWILIGHT ZONE

  • Found directly next to the CBD
  • Mainly terraced housing
  • Originally built for the factory workers to live - many of these factories have now closed down
  • Many inner city areas went through a period of decline
  • REGENERATION and GENTRIFICATION have now taken place (see notes on these)

ZONE C - INNER SUBURBS

  • Newer houses that were built for the growing population
  • Houses are usually large (semi detached) with gardens
  • There are some open spaces and some parks
  • Rows of 'local' shops

ZONE D - OUTER SUBURBS

  • Estates of detached housing grew rapidly in the 20th Cent. due to private transport improvements, meaning people could live further away from their place of work
  • These areas continued to grown in the 1960s/1970s
  • The land is much cheaper
  • Enough space to build larger housing estates
  • You can also find new shopping centres, parks and other open areas

ZONE E - OUT OF TOWN / COUNTRYSIDE

  • Built since the 1970s
  • New industrial estates
  • New business parks
  • New shopping centres
  • Close to main roads - easy access to public and employees as well as for goods being delivered.

 

 

 

THE INNER CITY - ORIGIN AND THE DECLINE

ORIGIN:

Most British towns began to grow rapidly in the 19th Century. The growth was linked to the development of industry and the huge demand for workers. The demand was met by large numbers of people leaving rural areas to work in the cities. They needed low-cost housing in which to live.

  • Large factories and houses were built close together so that the workers (who in those days had no other form of transport) could walk to work easily.
  • Development was rapid.
  • As there were no planning controls, little thought was given to building quality.
  • Only the most basic needs at the lowest possible costs were provided.

DECLINE:

Industry in the inner city declined as old factories closed down. There were several reasons for these closures:

  • Most factories were simply too old and used outdates methods of production.
  • There was strong competition from new factories and new products elsewhere.
  • The sites were crowded and poorly organised with no room for expansion.
  • Transport facilities were poor, with canals and railways closed and roads narrow and congested.
  • The environment was unattractive and unpleasant to work in.

As industry declined, many factories closed down and became derelict. These were either vandalised or pulled down and the land left unused. This further added to the area’s visual decay.

 

CASE STUDY - LONDON DOCKLANDS

THE PROBLEM:

Half the area was derelict, with many empty factories and warehoues

Terraced housing was up to 100years old. Houses were cheap, small and lacked modern amenities

Decline in industries resulted in high unemployment in the area - 14% of local workers unemployed

THE SOLUTION:

Transport links have been improved by building new roads

Huge new office blocks like Canary Wharf Tower have been built

Financial and high-tech industries have been attracted to the area

New leisure facilities and new shopping facilities

Creation of over 16,000 new jobs

Over 20,000 new houses and flats have been built. Old terraces have been cleared or renovated.

The area is now more attractive as derelict land has been reclaimed.

 

 

THE CHANGING NATURE OF THE INNER CITY

GENTRIFICATION is the movement of affluent (wealthy) people into the inner city due to improvements in the area - including housing and the area itself.

New businesses, such as restaurants, coffee shops cater for the wealthier consumers tend to emerge. This increases the areas appeal to more sophisticated migrants.

 

 

CITY CENTRES - DAYTIME AND NIGHTIME GEOGRAPHIES

With increased use of the city centres comes problems. TRAFFIC and ANTISOCIAL BEHAVIOUR are 2 problems that face any major town/cities.

TRAFFIC PROBLEMS:

  • Traffic has increased dramatically
  • Increased wealth has led to greater car use
  • Movement away from CBD's means more people are commuting
  • This has led to accidents, congestion and pollution, particularly in morning and evening rush hours
  • Time wasted in traffic is expensive for businesses

TRAFFIC SOLUTIONS:

  • Introducing flexi-hours to spread the traffic
  • Improve public transport
  • Implement traffic schemes including bus lanes, park and ride schemes etc
  • Introduce congestion charges (like in London)

ANTISOCIAL BEHAVIOUR PROBLEMS:

  • Cities have become leisure and entertainment centres - attracting more people
  • By day - increase in smaller crimes like pickpocketing anf shoplifting.
  • By night - large numbers of young people drinking alcohol has led to noise and violence.

ANTISOCIAL BEHAVIOUR SOLUTIONS:

  • Designated Public Places Orders (DPPO's) - give the police power to stop the drinking of alcohol in certain areas and seize alcohol from underage or nuisance drinkers in order to reduce behaviour.

 

SHOPPING HABITS

Low order goods: Essential every day items, convenience goods – such as bread, milk food etc.  Historically these goods would have been bought  from corner shops (though now obviously supermarkets have replaced their importance.)

High order goods: Those needed less frequently, non-essential often luxurious items, comparison goods such as electrical items, furniture, designer label clothes etc.  They are more expensive and are generally bought from large shopping centres, retail parks etc where people can shop around and have a larger choice.

 

Shopping habits have changed due to:

  • People’s lifestyles have changed both economically and socially
  • Better transport facilities so people can travel further
  • More people have their own cars
  • Small shops have declined due to competition from larger shopping areas and retail parks who generally have cheap or free parking
  • Whole day experience provided by many shopping areas and greater choice of shop
  • Longer opening hours so can shop after work]
  • Supermarkets have all your needs under one roof as far as the weekly grocery shop is concerned
  • More people have higher income
  • Internet and mail order and online market places e.g. EBay

 

Rural-urban fringe (RUF)

The Rural-Urban Fringe is the area where the city meets the countryside. Demand here has increased over the past few decades because:

  • Land is cheaper
  • There is less traffic congestion and pollution
  • There is easier access and a better road infrastructure
  • There is a more pleasant environment with more open space

Developers want to use this land for:

  • Housing developments as urban sprawl continues
  • Science and business parks
  • Shopping centres, hyper-markets and superstores
  • Office developments
  • Hotels and conference centres

PROBLEMS CAUSED BY DEVELOPING ON THE RURAL-URBAN FRINGE:

  • Large areas of countryside may be lost
  • Buildings may be out of character with existing rural buildings
  • Villages become suburbanised
  • Traffic is likely to increase (both cars and lorries)
  • There may be some noise or pollution
  • NIMBYism (Not in my back yard)

 

OUT OF TOWN SHOPPING CENTRES

In order to sell goods,shops need to be located where people can get to them easily. They need a large sphere of influence that guarantees a steady flow of customers and increasing profit. Building large shopping centres near good transport routes and motorway junctions can help. Shoppers frequently come in cars and out-of-town shopping centres or retail parks can offer large, free car parks, eg Cribbs Causeway near Bristol, Bluewater in Kent and the Trafford Centre in Manchester.

Outoftown

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ADVANTAGES OF OUT OF TOWN SHOPPING CENTRES:

  • More accessible than city centres, which are often congested
  • Large, free car parks
  • Larger stores – meaning there is a good range of products
  • Indoor shopping centres  - people are not affected by the weather
  • Purpose built shopping and leisure experiences with cafes, bowling and cinemas.

DISADVANTAGES OF OUT OF TOWN SHOPPING CENTRES:

  • Creates more traffic, especially at weekends and bank holidays
  • City centres lose trade because people go to the out of town shopping centres – resulting in a DOUGHNUT EFFECT (see below)
  • Harder for small shops and independent stores to be successful
  • May not be accessible to some members of the community e.g. the elderly.

 

DOUGHNUT EFFECT

The doughnut effect is the name given to the increasing movement of retail from the C.B.D. (Central Business District) to the outskirts (rural-urban fringe) of the cities. Obviously, cars have been the factor that have fueled this process, as well as, the attraction of an out-of-town site for retail.

Doughnut

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE CENTRAL BUSINESS DISTRICT (CBD) FIGHTS BACK!

All towns that have now been affected by out of town shopping face the same issue: they have to meet the needs of the consumers (shoppers) and respond to companies who wish to invest in their towns and cities.  In recent years, many towns and city planners have tried to encourage people to come back to the CBD, rather than using out of town shopping centres. The list below summarises some of the things that they have done:

  1. Improved town centre signs
  2. Improved parking
  3. Better use of public open spaces
  4. More public toilets
  5. An increase in Sunday trading opportunities
  6. Lower shop rates to encourage new owners into empty shop units.

 

THE CBD FIGHTS BACK: CARDIFF CASE STUDY

ST DAVID'S SHOPPING CENTRE (OPENED IN 2009)

In 2009, Cardiff City Council commissioned a major development scheme to help boost shopping facilities and tourism in the city. The project was focused around the redevelopment and extension of the St David’s shopping centre in the heart of the city centre, one of the main retail areas in the Welsh capital. The vision was to create a unique shopping, leisure, cultural and tourist destination, in order to establish Cardiff as the gateway to Wales and a leading European destination. The development of St David’s built upon regions already popular in Cardiff, including the original St David’s Shopping Centre and The Hayes. The aim was to revitalise the Southern end of the city centre, encouraging people to visit the previously under used area and helping confirm Cardiff as the home of fashion in Wales.

WHAT CARDIFF DID:

  • Spent £625 million on improving the area
  • Improved the function of the city centre – making it easier for shoppers
  • Improved public open spaces
  • Gave the city centre the ‘cosmopolitan’ look
  • Provided seasonal interest – shoppers are attracted all year around
  • Introduced plants and trees to main routes into the main shopping areas of the city
  • Street furniture – benches etc
  • Improved the natural landscape – to have a positive impact on well-being

 

THE CBD FIGHTS BACK: BIRMINGHAM CASE STUDY

BULLRING SHOPPING CENTRE (REOPENED IN 2003)

Birmingham’s city centre council was committed to raise their international and national profile. Birmingham already had an excellent reputation of being a major business, tourism and international meeting place.

Birmingham improved by:

  • Making the city centre highly attractive and accessible to do business and to visit
  • Maintain and improve access to the city centre by both private and public transport
  • £500 million was spent on improving the run down Bullring shopping centre
  • It was finally reopened in summer 2003 and is now the focus point of Birmingham’s CBD

 

THE RISE OF INTERNET SHOPPING

Internet

The internet enables people to shop in their own homes. You can buy almost anything over the internet. Two thirds of people in the UK have internet access in their homes and most high street chains have an internet site.

 

 

 

 

Advantages of internet shopping

  • No need to pay for the transport costs to travel to the shop
  • Saves time
  • More goods can be compared from retailers around the world
  • Retailers don’t have to pay high rents for city centre shops, so prices are lower
  • Goods are delivered to your doorstep
  • Shopping is available 24 hours per day

Disadvantages of internet shopping

  • Only people with access to a computer can shop online
  • Can’t try the goods before you  purchase and more effort required to return goods
  • No sales assistant to help advise you on your purchase
  • More difficult to tell whether sellers are trustworthy
  • High street shops struggle to compete against the internet – especially those selling music and films
  • Postage costs must be paid

 

AMAZON WAREHOUSE, SWANSEA

Amazon is one of the leading online retailers in the UK. In 2008, it opened its 4th distribution warehouse in the UK.

Situated in the Jersey Marine area, east of Swansea, it occupies land where the former aluminium works was once located.

The site in Swansea employs 1,200 full time workers and covers an area equivalent to 10 football pitches.

When the warehouse was opened in 2008, it received positive and negative support from most people:

POSITIVES:

  • Powerful for the Welsh economy
  • Jobs for the future
  • New link road to the M4 will improve road links for other industries nearby
  • Put the region on the map – will attract new industries

NEGATIVES:

Losing manufacturing jobs and becoming a nation of service workers

Most jobs will be low pay – hardly a boost for the economy

Places like this is killing the high street

Not going to help regenerate the city centre shopping area of Swansea

Amazon3

Amazon Warehouse in Swansea

Large site / Lots of land for expansion

Close to motorways

 

 

 

CONSUMER CHOICE... BUT... GLOBAL IMPACT?

As consumers, we are able to buy goods from around the world in shops and through the internet.

Some goods are made up from parts that are manufactured in different countries.

A CARBON FOOTPRINT is a measure of how much carbon is used in the production and transportation of a product. It is better for the environment to consume goods with a LOW carbon footprint.

Some people are concerned about the environmental impact of transporting goods over great distances. Many of the foods we eat are grown in other countries where the climate is different or perhaps where the workers are paid less. FOOD MILES are often used to refer to the total distance food has travelled before it is sold.

In 2009, it is estimated that more than 135,000 Kenyans were employed in growing and packaging flowers for the UK market.

Positive multiplier

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Very few products current contain information about carbon footprints but most have information about where the product was assembled or came from.

WASTE To help keep prices down, the quality of items may not be so good. The item may therefore be viewed as DISPOSABLE. In the UK the amount of waste we produce is increasing each year.

Disposing of good creates many problems, especially if the material is toxic.

POLLUTION There may also be other environmental issues, e.g. the production of goods may cause pollution to be released from the factory. LEDC’s may not have tight laws to regulate the amount of pollution allowed so they may be affected more.

LOWER WAGES Companies lower prices when they compete with other companies to attract customers. These have negative impacts. To help cut the cost of production, the workers may not have been paid a fair wage or may not be given breaks during the day. Factories with conditions like this are called SWEATSHOPS.

CHILD LABOUR Some countries do not have a lower limit on how old you need to be to work. In such countries (mainly Africa and South Asia) children can be employed to work in the factories.

 

 

 

 

 

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