In this chapter I shift the focus of attention from the neighbourhood and the major urban project to the wider places, or localities, in which both are situated. This presents challenges to the imagination, as the ‘place’ of the city or urban region or sprawling megalopolis is not easy to grasp as an ‘entity’ or whole (see Chapter 2). For some, it is symbolised by the pathways through it. For others, the place is embodied in key buildings, or facilities, or the ambience of particular locales, such as the city centre. It may often seem an overly abstract exercise to focus policy attention on the evolving dynamics and qualities of such amorphous and ungraspable large areas. Yet as the previous chapters have shown, the more concrete activities of development management and the reconfiguration of large parts of the urban fabric have often raised issues about the relation between neighbourhoods, key urban locales and the wider urban complex. Sometimes arguments for place-development strategies are justified merely in terms of the need for better coordination between project initiatives, or between development management activities and major projects (see Hopkins 2001). But there are also strong arguments for such strategic attention deriving from the ambition of promoting the liveability and sustainability of the locales of daily life in large urban complexes. Place-governance initiatives also have to justify how and why particular neighbourhoods and locales are selected for concentrated action.
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- Producing Place-Development Strategies
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- Chapter 7