Since the 1990s, European and North American cities started urban regeneration schemes aimed at capturing the positive side effects of heritage sites along with other cultural facilities. There now exists a wealth of studies explaining the mechanisms, networks, and effects of this approach. In recent years, many historic cities of China have initiated similar heritage-led development strategies to manage significant investments for historic urban areas. In part, current debates discuss the uneven effects of such redevelopment schemes in China, while the understanding of the internal decision-making network and the mechanisms of real estate appreciation remain quite limited. Moreover, few investigations have targeted how heritage preservation may be used for generating and capturing the economic value and how built heritage gets commodified for pro-growth purposes. This paper investigates the case of the Big Wild Goose Pagoda Area in Xi'an where large-scale real estate, commercial and tourism developments have been planned around an important heritage site. Through this case, the article highlights the different public and private actors and the real estate mechanisms that allowed them to both preserve heritage and benefit from tourism in the immediate surroundings of the Pagoda as well as in the city of Xi'an as a whole. At the same time, the spatial and economic outcomes of heritage-led development have negatively affected local communities. This paper calls for further attention to policy networks and planning arrangements in transforming heritage areas in China.

The policy networks of heritage-led development in Chinese historic cities: The case of Xi'an's Big Wild Goose Pagoda area

Zhao Y.;Ponzini D.;
2020

Abstract

Since the 1990s, European and North American cities started urban regeneration schemes aimed at capturing the positive side effects of heritage sites along with other cultural facilities. There now exists a wealth of studies explaining the mechanisms, networks, and effects of this approach. In recent years, many historic cities of China have initiated similar heritage-led development strategies to manage significant investments for historic urban areas. In part, current debates discuss the uneven effects of such redevelopment schemes in China, while the understanding of the internal decision-making network and the mechanisms of real estate appreciation remain quite limited. Moreover, few investigations have targeted how heritage preservation may be used for generating and capturing the economic value and how built heritage gets commodified for pro-growth purposes. This paper investigates the case of the Big Wild Goose Pagoda Area in Xi'an where large-scale real estate, commercial and tourism developments have been planned around an important heritage site. Through this case, the article highlights the different public and private actors and the real estate mechanisms that allowed them to both preserve heritage and benefit from tourism in the immediate surroundings of the Pagoda as well as in the city of Xi'an as a whole. At the same time, the spatial and economic outcomes of heritage-led development have negatively affected local communities. This paper calls for further attention to policy networks and planning arrangements in transforming heritage areas in China.
Commodification of heritage
Heritage-led development
Historic city
Policy network
Xi'an
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/1159750
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