Report: Cities and regeneration – Towards a new generation of urban centres


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People spend time in town and city centres to meet and interact with others but the drivers for that interaction have changed. The changing shape of retail has dominated the agenda in recent years but that is only part of the picture. So what is the future for our urban centres?

We want to play our part in defining a new, creative and optimistic future for our urban centres providing purpose and a backdrop for communities and businesses to thrive.

Flexibility and freedom are crucial to sustainable and successful places enabling them to respond to changing local needs. We need to create public and shared spaces to attract people to spend time there. And there are success stories we can learn from.

With any significant level of change to an area there is the risk of alienating the existing community which can fuel resistance to proposals. How can developers and local authorities engage with people more proactively and involve them in the regeneration process?

There are an increasing number of people at retirement age or above living longer, active and healthy lives. How can the built environment support them and help them to remain engaged with the communities in which they live? Historically retirement living or later living developments have been located away from urban centres – many developers and providers are now choosing to build in urban centres, providing life and economic activity. These organisations are challenging the existing stereotypes of what senior living and later living means.

Local government and local leadership are at the heart of urban centres but how has the role changed with resource cuts in recent years and what is the model for the future? How best can the powers and expertise of local authorities be harnessed to foster economic growth?

The future of our urban centres, both large and small, is a hot topic of discussion around the world. There has been lot of negativity around the changes in retail but nationally and indeed globally there is an opportunity to create better and more successful places; a new generation of urban centres.

The built environment which supports those centres is both a facilitator and an inhibitor of change – so how do investors and the real estate industry capitalise on this opportunity? We invite you to join our discussion looking at the role of our urban centres in our communities, how will towns interact with cities, towns with villages and what will bring the community to them.

To view the full report please click here.

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