I have just written the following in response to an article in New Start Magazine about there being little evidence that Estate Renewal Regeneration programmes have had much effect beyond physical inprovements:
“I think the reason Estate Renewal programmes don’t (on the whole) improve social and economic conditions is that they haven’t been properly designed to actually deliver these.
Added to the points you include as a starter are things such as the habit of sub-contracting the whole thing out to construction companies, with the contract going to the cheapest tenderer, with a slight nod made to wishing to have some local labour content and some apprentices. Perhaps ‘we’ need to turn the whole thing on its head and turn estate renewal into a project for the local population to design and deliver with wide ranging and long lasting support, training and education to enable them to do this.
The Pathfinder Programme comes to mind – in my view a much better approach would have been an incremental and community based one, but the big government agency in charge couldn’t have then just handed over the job to a big contractor and would have had to do a lot more work itself and to have acted as more than a property developer.”
Link to the New Start article can be found here: http://newstartmag.co.uk/your-blogs/shouldnt-give-estate-renewal/