Breathing life back into our cities
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Breathing life back into our cities

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These slides were prepared for the State of the City event in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in October 2012. They examine why we need to rethink urban policy in general, and city centres in particular, ...

These slides were prepared for the State of the City event in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in October 2012. They examine why we need to rethink urban policy in general, and city centres in particular, in the light of the challenges and opportunities we now face.

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 Breathing life back into our cities Breathing life back into our cities Presentation Transcript

  • Stadtluft macht frei?breathing life back into our cities
  • Events, dear boy, events...How far can we predict the pace and impact of change? 1The best laid masterplansDo our visions create space for the unpredictable? 2Beyond boom and bust?What kind of world will our children inherit? 3Ready, willing and ableHow our cities can be prepared for an uncertain future 4A pumping heartPutting the city centre back where it belongs 5Never mind all that, what about the empty shops?The end of retail-led regeneration, and a new role for the market 6
  • Remember it’s only 20 years since...The Maastricht The Church of The term Bob Dylan held Treaty paved England voted ‘surfing the his 30ththe way for the for women internet’ was anniversary Euro priests first recorded concert
  • How will we see life today in 20 years?It is the next generation and the one after that, not this one, thatwill judge the wisdom of the decisions we take for our cities ‣ In 1992 there were 26 web servers online in the world. How digitally connected will we be in 2032? ‣ In 1992 London’s Baltic Exchange was bombed. What threats will we face in 2032? ‣ In 1992 Amazon.com didn’t exist. How will we shop in 2032? 4
  • “We are probably nearing thelimit of all we can knowabout astronomy.” Simon Newcomb, astronomer, 1888
  • Events, dear boy, events...How far can we predict the pace and impact of change? 1The best laid masterplansDo our visions create space for the unpredictable? 2Beyond boom and bust?What kind of world will our children inherit? 3Ready, willing and ableHow our cities can be prepared for an uncertain future 4A pumping heartPutting the city centre back where it belongs 5Never mind all that, what about the empty shops?The end of retail-led regeneration, and a new role for the market 6
  • Urban renaissance: a guide for wishful thinkersSix steps to heaven (or, failing that, shopping and office nirvana) Sit back and watch the market 6 work its magic (having invested millions in public subsidy) Spend years seeking 5 compulsory purchase of sites you need to redevelop Do deals with global retail 4 developers to create a shopping centre with big-nameCreate funky public spaces with anchor tenants 3 street art, fountains, and bijou restaurants Bring in a world-famous 2 architect to design a Lament your city’s poor retail masterplan offer, old offices and 1 (blobby buildings optional) derelict warehouses
  • And here’s one they prepared earlier...Bradford: from vision to disappointment to...?
  • Without the people, the vision perishesThe best plans are skeletons. It is the people of the city, workingtogether, who put flesh on the bones and bring them to life. ‣ Challenge 1: Investment. Is the old model of property speculation and rising land values broken? ‣ Challenge 2: Jobs. There are 17.4m jobseekers across the eurozone, with another 4.5m job losses predicted by the ILO. ‣ Challenge 3: Poverty. Patterns of deprivation in UK cities have proved resistant to successive interventions. 9
  • “The government has madeglobal change our ally...” ‘Prosperous Places’, DCLG, 2007
  • Events, dear boy, events...How far can we predict the pace and impact of change? 1The best laid masterplansDo our visions create space for the unpredictable? 2Beyond boom and bust?What kind of world will our children inherit? 3Ready, willing and ableHow our cities can be prepared for an uncertain future 4A pumping heartPutting the city centre back where it belongs 5Never mind all that, what about the empty shops?The end of retail-led regeneration, and a new role for the market 6
  • Civilisations don’t collapse, do they?Are we witnessing the first generation of children in the UKwho have poorer life chances than their parents? Consumers enjoy a standard of living created by their predecessors Empire builders use the without renewing the resources advantages of power and they depend on. Production and resources to expand their innovation decline operations, keeping competitors in client relationships Civilisations collapse from within, through loss ofPioneers and traders build energy and resources; andsettlements and markets, without, as others take overproducing new goods and territory and markets. Whatservices through exchange might be the triggers for us?and innovation Pioneers Traders Empire builders Consumers Survivors?
  • 5 risk factors facing our citiesWhy we need to look beyond a narrative of deficit reduction85% of the world’s By 2050, there will 5 October 2012:ocean fisheries are be more people over Greek prime ministerfully exploited, over- the age of 60 in the compares effects ofexploited or world than children unemployment todepleted under 15 1930s Germany Scarcity Climate change Demographics Capital flight Political unrest UK floods, 2007: Global investment 13 dead decisions are shifting: 7,000 businesses 2 of the world’s top 5 affected sovereign wealth funds 48,000 homes flooded are Chinese
  • “Climate change is affectingthe ocean in ways that weare only beginning tounderstand.” World Bank, 2012
  • Events, dear boy, events...How far can we predict the pace and impact of change? 1The best laid masterplansDo our visions create space for the unpredictable? 2Beyond boom and bust?What kind of world will our children inherit? 3Ready, willing and ableHow our cities can be prepared for an uncertain future 4A pumping heartPutting the city centre back where it belongs 5Never mind all that, what about the empty shops?The end of retail-led regeneration, and a new role for the market 6
  • Towards a sustainable cityQualities for surviving and thriving in an unpredictable world Key principles: adaptable creative ‣ Living within environmental limits AND ‣ Ensuring a strong, just and healthy society AND sustainable? ‣ Achieving a sustainable economy AND ‣ Involving citizens in decision- making AND productive stewarding ‣ Using sound evidence to inform our plans and actions
  • The city of the future is a city of social and functional integration, culturaldiversity, accessible education, resource conservation and regional dialogue. (Freiburg Charter for sustainable urbanism)
  • “Human cleverness, desires,motivations, imagination andcreativity are replacinglocation, natural resourcesand market access as urbanresources.” Charles Landry, The Creative City (2000)
  • Events, dear boy, events...How far can we predict the pace and impact of change? 1The best laid masterplansDo our visions create space for the unpredictable? 2Beyond boom and bust?What kind of world will our children inherit? 3Ready, willing and ableHow our cities can be prepared for an uncertain future 4A pumping heartPutting the city centre back where it belongs 5Never mind all that, what about the empty shops?The end of retail-led regeneration, and a new role for the market 6
  • How the city centre can shape the futureCreating space to breathe: the oxygen that keeps the city alive Reviving Localising Inspiring Prioritising Greening the the civic investment innovation production economy
  • “High streets and towncentres that are fit for the21st century need to bemultifunctional socialcentres, not simplycompetitors for stretchedconsumers.” ‘The 21st Century Agora’
  • Events, dear boy, events...How far can we predict the pace and impact of change? 1The best laid masterplansDo our visions create space for the unpredictable? 2Beyond boom and bust?What kind of world will our children inherit? 3Ready, willing and ableHow our cities can be prepared for an uncertain future 4A pumping heartPutting the city centre back where it belongs 5Never mind all that, what about the empty shops?The end of retail-led regeneration, and a new role for the market 6
  • Can we shop our way to a better future?Do we put demand back in the economy, or demand a better economy? Retail-led Order can be Resilience is Access is Time is moreregeneration the enemy of the new better than important is failing activity renaissance ownership than money
  • “The soul of the city - thestrength which makes itbreathe, exist and progress -resides in each one of itscitizens.” Jaime Lerner, mayor of Curitiba, Brazil