The Sociology Of How Cities Develop

This is a vast but interesting topic – how social norms, wealth, and access to different resources shape the socioeconomic structure of cities… and thus the housing style, type, quality, access to ammenities (think parks and green space).

As one little example, here is a blog post by Dan Zambonini over at The Januarist about why lower income neighbourhoods in cities are usually located in the east.  I think it may be an interesting addition to our exploration of communities like Eastivew.

** Thanks to Amy L. for the link!

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The Sociology Of How Cities Develop

One thought on “The Sociology Of How Cities Develop

  1. wourliem says:

    I find figuring out the origin of cities really interesting, trying understand why/how certain configurations come about. When larger patterns start emerging after looking at various cities we get to shed some light on fundamental conditions that influence human developments. In this case an environmental factor, the prevailing wind direction.

    I’m not sure Regina fits into Zambonini’s explanation of why cities have poorer areas to the east, but I think Regina certainly has had this pattern in its history. I’d generally characterize Regina as a North-South city that’s been influenced most by the rail line. It makes sense with all spurs and tracks coming from the north those neighborhoods adjacent to consistent train use would be less valued than neighbourhoods would south of the main track (.

    The original ‘poor’ area of the city was south of the track but EAST of the main city in Germantown (wasn’t Arcola a rail line at one point? Maybe the nearness of the ‘Arcola Line’ helped to reduce the value of Germantown land.). Was coal smoke from chimneys and a dominant North-West wind part of this? I don’t think water forms any part of this pattern, unlike Zmabonini’s London example, Wascana creek flows east to west and isn’t the same sort of resource the Thames is.

    Eastview and Glencairn would be later working class neighbourhoods built in the east side of the city, but many more affluent neighbourhoods such as University Park have been built since to make the South-East area of the city very well-to-do.

    On the flip side, the West end or Cathedral was built to be, I think, were at least middle class. The Crescents and old Lakeview certainly were more affluent. As time went on, the West spread into areas like Rosemont and Dieppe, which were again, more working-middle class, post-war suburbs. It was southern neighbourhoods like Hillsdale and Whitmore Park that were being built at that time for the wealthy/upper class/professional class in Regina.

    Now, the North-West, like the South-East is becoming, in the last few decades, the go to place for new large homes in Regina.

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