CS1 - Inner London: crisis in a capital city
What are the aspects and effects of the inner city crisis in London?

1. Hackney’s regeneration, a solution to the inner city crisis
• Better social housing: the example of the Holly Street estate
From deprivation (1992) with degraded social housing (towers and blocks, high crime and isolation): low quality of life
To regeneration (2012) building small houses and green streets = with better affordable social housing and amenities for low-income groups who were not displaced, who could stay.
• But intensive gentrification elsewhere:
1977-2007: progressive regeneration attracts middle class families and then creative business (Silicon Roundabout start-up)
Since 2010: mostly high-income jobs for highly skilled workers => can afford very expensive renovated housing => prices increased => Silicon Roundabout, the high-tech digital cluster for start-ups, is now less attractive.
=> Polarisation & tensions
A cosmopolitan neighbourhood (60% White, 25% Black, 10% Asian) without racial tensions
But socio-economic polarisation, divide (education, employment) and so tensions between deprived and gentrified populations => riots.

2. Urban sprawl, a consequence of inner city crisis
• The reasons for urban sprawl:
Less middle-class affordable housing in Greater (inner + outer) London
=> Counterurbanisation over the Green Belt to South-East England as lower housing + commuting costs
=> Middle-class better quality of life but rising housing prices in commuter town & more congestion
• A changing mobility:
Commuting mostly by car in Outer London & by tube in Inner London
=> More connected Inner London public transport services (bus, rail & tube), more cycling thanks to ‘Boris’ bikes (2010 self-service cycle hire by mayor Boris Johnson) and less cars due to Central London congestion charge (2003 by mayor Ken Livingstone) => less pollution
• But persistent challenges:
Congestion: low road speeds at all time + overcrowded & unreliable public transports
+ Expensive public transport => unaffordable for lower-income groups => economic barrier to work
=> Need for self-contained non-commuting communities