Revitalising Urban Neighbourhoods

Mixing Shops and Homes


Urban life is about being close to everything, so a developer with the idea of mixing shops and homes could find the local government ready to listen to their plans. The people living in the area might be open to those same plans if it revitalizes their neighbourhood. Many cities and their residents are looking for good ideas, but they need to realize sacrifices are sometimes part of the investment in a better future. For those willing to look ahead, recreating a small neighbourhood might be worthwhile.

Cities tend to be broken up into areas with different zoning, and residential zones are often a series of streets that comprise small neighbourhoods. A developer finding a group of streets in this type of area might do a survey to see if adding shops where houses once stood could be a good project. There might be difficulties with widening the roads, or the residents might not be eager to have businesses near their homes. All of this is the reason governments hold meetings on projects before they are approved.

It can be difficult for some residents to see that adding shops where abandoned buildings currently stand is a way to revitalize an area. Many residents see it as a way to force them out of their homes. Rather than looking at what they will gain in the future, they may look at the need to take one or two houses to create parking or roadways as a sacrifice they are unwilling to make. This is why many projects stall.

Mixing shops and homes is another way to retain the character of small neighbourhoods while introducing businesses that will provide more revenue and jobs to an area. It can be a difficult battle to get the permits for the project, but even those opposed may eventually see how it brings an area back to life.