UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

The Past, Present and Futures of the High Street: report on the Closing Conference of the Adaptable Suburbs project

Bolton, T; Vaughan, LS; (2014) The Past, Present and Futures of the High Street: report on the Closing Conference of the Adaptable Suburbs project. The Bartlett School of Graduate Studies, UCL (University College London): London. Green open access

[img] PDF
HighStreetConference_Report.pdf
Available under License : See the attached licence file.

Download (4MB)

Abstract

The Adaptable Suburbs Closing Conference, the culmination of four years’ research into the factors that influence the success of town centres, heard from a wide selection of international high street researchers. A number of themes emerged with direct relevance to current policy debate on the future of the high street and have been written up in a report. Following is a summary of the report: Despite the obituaries the high street is still very much alive. High streets have proved resilient, surviving centuries of social change to remain the functional centre of most towns and cities; High streets have changed in order to survive but, while buildings and businesses may be different, the mix of uses has remained very similar. This mix is essential to a successful high street; Cities function as movement networks, and because movement creates activity it determines whether high streets succeed or fail. If pedestrians and traffic are diverted away, high streets wither and die; High streets are poorly understood, but they represent a combination of complex influences creating enormous economic and social benefit, which is both under-recognised and undervalued. They are an asset that we need to appreciate, and to invest in; High streets are threatened by poor planning. Standard planning definitions of high streets miss out large areas of business and other non-domestic activity. This leaves them unprotected, and pressure to convert commercial premises to residential use could permanently undermine their viability; Not all high streets are healthy. Many are suffering and will need intervention and investment to support them. Policy should focus on bringing people back to high streets, generating the activity needed to support businesses; Planners and policymakers need to take ordinary, small-scale high street uses more seriously. Ignoring small businesses and local activities means ignoring the important social role they play and the people who make a living through them; Both the economic and the social value of high streets need to be measured and represented better, and communicated clearly to investors and decision-makers; The future of the high street is an international issue, and an international research agenda is needed to help understand and address common problems.

Type: Report
Title: The Past, Present and Futures of the High Street: report on the Closing Conference of the Adaptable Suburbs project
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: https://uclsstc.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/highst...
Language: English
Additional information: © The Adaptable Suburbs Project, The Barlett, University College London. Funded by the EPSRC, grant no. EP/I001212/1
Keywords: high street, sustainability, economy, town centres, space syntax
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/1431513
Downloads since deposit
0Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item