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Regeneration Case Studies

Regeneration Case Studies

Regeneration case studies help us to understand the different approaches to regeneration and see what impacts they have on the population and environment. Different approaches are taken for different areas, whether the aim is a regeneration project or the economic support for the project. These case studies inform about the nature of different regeneration projects, measures of success in a regeneration project and the different assessments according to different stakeholders. The main aim is that we reduce the Negative Impacts of Regeneration.

A Level regeneration case studies

Regeneration is the process of upgrading existing urban, rural, industrial and commercial areas to bring about social and economic change on a long-term scale.

As part of the A Level course, it is important not only to understand what regeneration is and the impacts that it has, but also to put this into context. Case studies are a good way of putting the concepts into the real world and seeing exactly how they work and what influences them.

Regeneration case studies, Regeneration UK, StudySmarterFig. 1 - Urban regeneration in the UK

Urban regeneration case studies

Urban regeneration case studies, as the name suggests, are examples of regeneration projects occurring in urban areas. Some urban areas are targeted for regeneration because of challenges, such as deindustrialisation, dereliction, economic decline and mass deprivation. Such issues are common in contemporary urban environments.

Some examples of urban regeneration case studies include Stratford and Salford Quays.

Another urban area that will potentially undergo regeneration in the near future is Croyde and the remainder of North Devon.

While the two urban areas differ in terms of location and history, they do have things in common. Amongst these is the fact that both areas went from economic prosperity into drastic economic decline and suffered from lowering environmental quality, high unemployment rates, dereliction and social problems. This prompted the introduction of regeneration projects in both places. These projects took different forms, had different stakeholders and operated over different durations. However, both projects resulted in successful regeneration. Now, both areas have significantly improved infrastructure, environmental quality, housing provisions, services and economic opportunities.

Town centre regeneration case studies

A town centre, like an urban area more generally, is a common place targeted by regeneration projects. This is because there is a pattern of town centres undergoing periods of economic decline, resulting in the urban challenges mentioned above. This happens for many reasons. The most prominent of these are arguably the processes of suburbanisation and counter-urbanisation.

Suburbanisation is the process of a large proportion of people relocating from town centres into the outskirts (suburbs).

Counter-urbanisation is the process of a large proportion of people relocating from urban areas to rural areas and is seen as the opposite of urbanisation.

Suburbanisation and counter-urbanisation happen for many reasons, including a mixture of push (factors persuading people to move out of a place) and pull (factors attracting people to another place) factors. One of the major causes of push factors in town centres has been deindustrialisation.

regeneration case studies, suburbanisation, StudySmarterFig. 2 - A suburban area is located close to, but apart from, an urban area

Following the success of the Industrial Revolution, the UK has since undergone mass deindustrialisation. This removal of industrial (secondary economic) activity had many negative impacts, including a spike in unemployment rates, dereliction and out-migration from town/ urban centres. In Liverpool, the collapse of the Albert Docks in the 1960s caused warehouses to become abandoned, people to lose their jobs, environmental quality to decrease and people to move out of the area. A regeneration project run by the Merseyside Development Corporation from the 1980s onwards has allowed the area to transform into a hub for investment, tourism and commercial activity. The area has also seen an influx of migrants looking for new opportunities.

Sustainable urban regeneration case studies

Sustainable urban regeneration aims to meet the demands of the current population without compromising on the needs of the future population(s). The focus on sustainability across regeneration projects has increased as awareness of environmental issues, such as climate change, has increased. As well as simply an increased awareness, there is now much more pressure from stakeholders and the public to act in a way that is not detrimental to future people and the environment. So what are some of the key characteristics of sustainable urban regeneration case studies?

Typically, they aim to:

  • Transition away from dependence on non-renewable resources, and instead use renewable resources (e.g. moving away from fossil fuels and using renewable energy, such as solar and wind).
  • Make sure that the regeneration project benefits everyone. For example, there is no use building lots of nice new houses if most people can't afford to buy them!
  • Have enough resources or basic services to provide for the entire population.
  • Encourage a high level of liveability (a measure of how good the living conditions in a place are).
  • Have provisions to allow people to walk, cycle and/or make use of public transport, instead of relying on cars.
  • Encourage the population to produce little waste and to manage the waste sustainably (e.g. via reusing and recycling).
  • Ensure an acceptance of all people, regardless of background.
  • Enable sustainable economic growth.

regeneration case studies, liveability, StudySmarterFig. 3 - Liveability can include how walkable or cyclable a place is. What does access look like?

For example, Edinburgh's regeneration scheme will include carbon-neutral housing and public transport links, extensions of the public transport network to connect more people to the city, the introduction of mixed-use neighbourhoods and a 'green network' that connects all the urban green spaces via low-emission routes.

Rural regeneration case studies

Traditionally, rural areas were seen as places to retire, for short leisure activities, or for those in the agricultural industry. However, rural areas have seen a recent increase in population due to counter-urbanisation. This is down to a few factors:

  • People are tired of or unable to pay high rents and mortgages in cities and suburban areas.
  • Urban areas experience huge amounts of pollution, e.g. noise and environmental. People may move to rural areas to improve their health and mental well-being.
  • Since the COVID-19 global pandemic, more and more people have been working from home. Since there is no need to commute to cities and towns, people choose more aesthetically pleasing places to live.

With more and more people moving to rural areas, some regeneration may be needed. Improving transport links while maintaining the natural beauty of places will be important. Perhaps most important, is to include the locals in these regeneration projects.

Check out our explanation of Urban and Rural spaces to learn more!

Measuring the success of regeneration case studies

It is clear that regeneration projects differ considerably depending on the circumstances and the resources available. Therefore, it can be difficult to compare and contrast projects directly.

To measure the success of regeneration case studies, it is important to consider whether or not they have improved the area in the long-term, whether or not these improvements apply and are accessible to everyone and whether the future generation(s) and environment will be negatively implicated as a consequence of the regeneration. Through examining these three metrics, it is impossible to consider whether a regeneration case study has been a success or a failure.

Regeneration Case Studies - Key takeaways

  • Regeneration case studies are ways to see the true implications of regeneration projects.
  • Regeneration projects are different depending on the place and economic circumstances.
  • Sustainable regeneration projects are providing a way to upgrade places in the long-term without compromising on the needs of the future generation(s) and the environment.

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References

  1. Fig. 1: Regeneration in the UK (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Blakenhall_Gardens_regeneration_in_Wolverhampton_-_geograph.org.uk_-_3397592.jpg) by Roger Kidd (https://www.geograph.org.uk/profile/12192) licensed by CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/deed.en)

Frequently Asked Questions about Regeneration Case Studies

Key elements of urban regeneration are economic transition, employment change, social and community building and sustainable development.

Regeneration can solve help the  urban problems such as taking derelict, polluted, brown-field places to be restored and used for new purposes.

East London underwent deindustrialisation between the 1960-70s as it couldn't compete against newer container ports. As a result in the 1980s there was a regeneration project to help the docklands area.

There are many areas that have been regenerated, the Tower Hamlets have had the most projects, whilst other areas such as Islington, Lambeth, Hackney and Southwark have also had many regeneration projects.

Final Regeneration Case Studies Quiz

Question

Where is Croyde located?

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in North Devon, South West England. It lies in an Area of Outstanding National Beauty (AONB) and it faces the Atlantic Ocean

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When and where was Croyde first mentioned under the names Crideholde/Chrideholda?

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In 1086 in the Domesday Book

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What significant event happened in 1943?


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Nearby Saunton Sands, Braunton Burrows and Baggy Point were used by American soldiers to practise for the D-day landings.

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What happened here in the 1960s?


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As tension with the Soviet Union rose during the Cold War, a Royal Observer Corps (ROC) bunker was erected to watch over the British skies for any Soviet planes, bombs or missiles

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What is the public transport like in Croyde?


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Very limited. Closest train station is Barnstaple, 10mi/16km away. Only 1 bus an hour from Monday to Saturday, Only 1 bus every 2 hours on Sunday

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Why is limited public transport a disadvantage?

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It will bring more cars into the area, as people take their own car (or a hired car). This can negatively affect the environment (pollution), traffic (jams), and the availability of parking spaces.

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Are there any schools in Croyde?


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No

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What type of climate does Croyde have and what does that mean?


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It has an oceanic climate, which means mild summers, cool but cold winter and a relatively narrow annual temperature range

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What is the best time to visit Croyde and why?

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from June to October. During these months the temperature is nice, and there is limited rainfall

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What is Croyde beach renowned for?

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It is one of the best spots in the UK to surf

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What is important to remember when you go swimming at Croyde beach?


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Always swim between the flags as that is the safest spot

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When is the RNLI Lifeguard service available?

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From May to September, throughout the Easter weekend and all October weekends and October Half Term, from 10 am to 6 pm.

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When does a beach get a Blue Flag?

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When all the criteria are met for cleanliness, water quality, and facilities. A Blue Flag must be applied for first

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What is the Marine Conservation Society (MCS)?


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A charity organisation concerned with protecting the sea and its wildlife

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When did Croyde beach get awarded by the MCS?


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2022

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When are dogs allowed on the beach?


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Between 1 October and 30 April

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According to the official Croyde Bay guide, why should you camp at Croyde?


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  • Surfer's paradise
  • Picturesque village
  • Family-friendly seafront

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What types of accommodation is available at Croyde?

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  • camping
  • Bed & Breakfast (B&B)
  • Holiday parks
  • Hotels
  • Holiday letting agencies
  • Self-catering/holiday lets

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What is the name of the annual festival at Croyde and when is it held?


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The festival is called GoldCoast OceanFest and it is held the weekend closest to the summer solstice

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What 4 things are being evaluated for regeneration in North Devon?

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  1. Economic growth 
  2. Supporting tourism growth and development in northern Devon 
  3. Recovery of North Devon 
  4. Surfing beaches economic plan 

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Where is Stratford located?

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In East London, about 7 miles from Central London

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What was Stratford like after the decline?

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It had one of the most deprived communities in the country, unemployment was high, and health levels were poor. Stratford lacked proper infrastructure, and the environmental quality was poor. 

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What was Stratford like before the decline?


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During the Victorian Era, the Metropolitan Building Act, the new railway, and the creation of the Royal Docks accelerated industrialisation. With it, Stratford saw a lot of work opportunities.

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What caused Stratford's decline?


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Deindustrialisation and the closure of the Royal Docks

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Why did the Royal Docks close in 1981?


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The creation of containerised cargo and other technological changes. The containerised cargo was much more efficient for transporting goods, but it required larger ships. These ships could not navigate down as far as the Royal Docks.

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Which 5 cities were in the running to host the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games?


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  1. London
  2. Paris
  3. New York City
  4. Moscow
  5. Madrid

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Why was Stratford chosen for the 2012 Olympics?


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It was one of the most deprived communities of the UK, it had a high population density, low annual income, high unemployment, it had readily available waste and industrial lands for building, and it was located only 7 minutes from the City.

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Which 3 legacies were planned in the bidding process?

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  1. Sports venues
  2. Social and economic benefits
  3. Transport

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Explain what the legacy for the sports venues was?

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Buildings that were going to get a new life after the Games were permanent buildings. Buildings that were not getting a new life on-site were temporary ones, and they were relocated elsewhere after the games.

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What were the benefits of the Stratford regeneration?


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  • Social - new homes were built, with around 1/3 of those becoming more affordable. There are also now academic options for pupils between 3 and 18.

  • Economic - due to improved infrastructure, it has better connections to the rest of London. This means people can find work elsewhere. This led to the multiplier effect. Also, the re-opening of the Royal Docks is causing economic growth.

  • Environmental - Some of the ways the park is sustainable are walking routes, water-efficient design of homes, and protecting natural habitats. 

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The Stratford 'culture boost' is bringing new buildings into the area. Which ones?


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  • UCL East Campus
  • Sadler's Wells dance theatre
  • The BBC
  • A V&A museum
  • London College of Fashion
  • V&A collection and research centre

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What are some of the reasons that Stratford is a good place to live?


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  • Great schools
  • Lots of great places to eat, drink, relax, and shop
  • Lots of green spaces
  • Stratford is one of the best-connected areas of London
  • There are great places to live

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How much did the regeneration of Stratford/London cost?


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Approximate £10 billion

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The Olympic Park got a new name after the Games. What is the new name, and why did it get it?


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It is now called the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. It was changed to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II.

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Was the regeneration of Stratford a positive one for everybody? Explain.


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No. The area became more affluent, and therefore housing is still unaffordable for the poor(er) people in the community. 

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Name 1 social con.

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In order to create the site, 450 Housing Association flats, which is where the poorer people lived, were torn down.

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Name 1 economic con.

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380 existing businesses had to move

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Name 1 environmental con.


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For construction, much of the wildlife already there had to be relocated. 

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Why is the Stratford 'culture boost' a positive thing?


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  • The construction of all the buildings creates 1,500 jobs, with at least 30% of those for local residents.
  • Afterwards, an estimated 2,500 jobs are available.
  • It brings more tourism to the area.

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Apart from hosting the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics, Stratford is now also known for what?


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The Westfield Stratford City - the largest urban shopping mall in Europe.

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Where is Salford Quays located?

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In Salford, Greater Manchester

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When and why were the Manchester Docks built?

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It was built in 1887 as a result of the Industrial Revolution and trade.

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Who built the Manchester Docks?


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The Manchester Ship Canal Company.

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When did the Manchester Docks close?


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1982

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What led to the closure of the Manchester Docks?


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Containerisation. This led to larger ships which could no longer navigate the canal.

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When the Docks closed, what was the socio-economic impact of the job losses?


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  • There was an increase in crime and vandalism.
  • Neighbourhoods became derelict.
  • Businesses moved away or closed down.
  • People who could afford it moved away, leaving behind the poor(er) people of the communities.
  • Services and amenities declined.

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What happened when the Manchester Docks closed?

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Many jobs were lost, the economy was shattered, the area became derelict and the land was heavily contaminated.

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Who purchased the area of the Manchester Docks and when?


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Salford City Council in 1984.

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What happened in 1985?


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The Salford Quays Development Plan was proposed.

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When the Docks closed in 1982, there were a lot of issues. What kind of issues?

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  • The land was left derelict and contaminated. 
  • Communities fell into social problems.
  • High rates of unemployment.
  • Local housing areas fell into disrepair.

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