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The impact of minority ethnic businesses on the spatial character of London's high streets

Vaughan, LS; Khan, S; Tarkhanyan, L; Dhanani, AN; (2018) The impact of minority ethnic businesses on the spatial character of London's high streets. Urban Design International , 23 (4) pp. 249-263. 10.1057/s41289-018-0060-5. Green open access

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Abstract

Research shows that a variety of building types, sizes and street morphologies can support a diversified mix of uses and thus contribute to the vitality of town centres. Other studies have highlighted the special role of minority ethnic businesses in this context. This study set out to examine the relationship between spatial accessibility, commercial diversity (as a measure of land use mixing) and minority ethnic business (MEB) diversity in ten of London’s high streets. We found that streets with a significant MEB presence were more likely to benefit from commercial diversity and that the sampled MEB units were measurably smaller in size. We also found the location of larger clusters of MEB businesses to be more accessible, both locally and across the city. The study also found three distinct types of MEB centres: ranging from high streets with a small MEB presence, others with a high rate of MEB mixing, and a third type: the ‘ethnic marketplace’, with a singular ethnic character. We conclude that greater attention should be given to designing street accessibility, lot configuration, mixed building sizes, and land use mixing, so as to serve the long-term economic and social vitality of local town centres.

Type: Article
Title: The impact of minority ethnic businesses on the spatial character of London's high streets
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1057/s41289-018-0060-5
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1057/s41289-018-0060-5
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: space syntax, land use diversity, minority ethnic businesses, London, built form
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > The Bartlett School of Architecture
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10042527
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