Cities better or not?

9 Nov 2007 by Karl Hallam

Two views in one week - According to the Government "the regeneration of cities such as Sheffield, Leeds and Hull have made these cities barely recognisable from the 1980s when jobs and opportunities were few and far between" said Caroline Flint, Minister for Yorkshire and Humber at the Core Cities Summit. But, a think tank (Policy Exchange) report says, "over the last 10 years, and despite a doubling in funding levels, the very cities that have received these record levels of funding have fallen further behind".

It would be easy to see this as the Government banging the drum and an opposition aligned think tank having a go, but Cadence's view is that they both have a point when you look closer. Clearly, the improvements to the public realm in our city centres are something that Cadence are pleased about, with our view on the importance of public space on quality of life.

However, the Policy Exchange report amongst other things highlights the fact that "People are 38% less likely to register a new business in an urban policy city than in a successful city, a figure unchanged since 1997". Cadence's work on supporting business in derpived areas has highlighted some of the difficulties that have been encountered, but notes that we should reserve judgement on LEGI (Local Enterprise Growth Initiative), which has not been going long enough to have an impact yet.

So cities better or not, well it's just not that straightforward.

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