Macquarie University
2 files

Master-planned estates in the inner-city as an example of new-build gentrification: social and cultural change and governance

posted on 2022-03-28, 23:30 authored by Carolyn Frances Thompson
This dissertation explores the drivers and characteristics of master-planned estate (MPE) development in the inner-city as a means of advancing debates not only on the increasingly prevalent phenomena of MPEs, but also of three key geographical concepts: gentrification, neoliberalism and community. These three terms have underpinned urban geography research that attempts to understand how the contemporary city works. The thesis advances these arguments through case studies of Sydney, Australia, and Brooklyn, New York, USA. A holistic approach is undertaken that aims to understand inner-city estate development through their marketing strategies, the residents that live there, the strategies and policies guiding their development and the neighborhood dynamics in which they are developed. -- Using mixed methods, I address key questions surrounding MPE development in the inner-city and its linkages with gentrification. Interviews, surveying and documentary analysis provide the basis for understanding how these developments are bound up in larger processes of urban change and discourse analysis aids in understanding representations of redevelopment and urban change. Interviews and a survey of estate residents provide insight into the internal dynamics of these places, ways of neighboring and how a sense of place and community is constructed. Analysis of government redevelopment plans allows for an understanding of the strategic drivers of MPE production in the entrepreneurial, neoliberal city. Discussions with neighborhood activists enable a way of seeing contestations of redevelopment and gentrification, and an understanding of neighborhood residents who are not living in an MPE. Interviews with local business owners and analysis of media discourse surrounding the area's redevelopment allow for an exploration of the neighborhood's wider changes and how they are represented. Each chapter presents a particular way of approaching the question of MPE development in the inner-city. -- In doing so, I conclude that inner-city MPEs are, like their suburban counterparts, spaces constructed through class-positioning; however, inner-city estates are also unique, more complex and less homogenous than literature on suburban MPEs would have us believe. Inner-city MPEs are manifestations of larger processes of urban redevelopment and are integrally bound up in new-build gentrification. The development of urban MPEs and the proliferation of new-build gentrification are not only integrated processes, but the coupling of MPE and gentrification literatures furthers both fields of research by contextualizing thus far unexplored production of MPEs in the inner-city, as well as contributing to understandings of contemporary gentrification in Sydney. They are a form of development encouraged by the state and executed by public-corporate partnerships, reflecting the understanding of new- build gentrification put forth by Smith (2002), with the hopes they will encourage livable, socially-mixed communities. This aspect of MPE development in the inner- city demonstrates the hybrid ways neoliberal urbanism is impacting cities in that it is articulated and contested (Leitner et al., 2007) by a variety of actors, including the state, corporate interests and city residents with diverse goals and visions of urban redevelopment. Overall MPEs represent spaces in which struggles over neighborhood, community and redevelopment are played out, with this research showing they are contested developments.


Table of Contents

1. Introduction -- 2. Understanding contemporary inner urban change -- 3. Master-planned estates in the inner-city: an overview of MPE development in the City of Sydney -- 4. Resident life in an inner-city MPE: gentrification, community and homogeneity versus diversity -- 5. Art, food and gentrification: how consumption spaces are re-writing new meanings of place in Waterloo -- 6. State and community discourses of urban redevelopment - the RWA, 'social-mix' and community contestation -- 7. Discourses of community contestation: the fight over Atlantic Yards in Brooklyn, New York -- 8. Conclusion -- Appendices: -- Appendix 1. Questionnaire/survey -- Appendix 2. Redfern-Waterloo Authority documents analysed -- Appendix 3. Cross tabulations from survey -- Appendix 4. Interview questions, Crown Square residents -- Appendix 5. Set interview questions for Danks Street business owners -- Appendix 6. Set interview questions for REDWatch members -- Appendix 7. Ethics approvals.


Bibliography: p. 205-224 21 August 2011

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis PhD


Thesis (PhD), Macquarie University, Faculty of Science, Dept. of Environment and Geography

Department, Centre or School

Department of Environment and Geography

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Robyn Dowling


Copyright disclaimer: Copyright Carolyn Frances Thompson 2012.




1 online resource (vii, 245 p.) col. ill., map

Former Identifiers

mq:25323 1817275