Urban regeneration programmes in Catalonia: towards a gentrification process? The case of La Barceloneta

This seminar analyses the main results of the last urban regeneration programme in Catalonia, called Neighbourhood Law .

Montse Simó-Solsona, CRIT- Creativity, Innovation and Urban Transformation Research Group, University of Barcelona

The evolution of regeneration programmes is different from British tradition, mostly influenced by political, demographic factors and also tenure housing system, among others. Neighbourhood Law is inspired by the European programme URBAN and it adopts an integral approach to tackle not only physical, but also social, economic and environmental problems in highly deteriorated urban areas.

Although it has some virtues, Neighbourhood Law has some weaknesses to be aware of, such as the threat that urban regeneration could lead into a gentrification process. This is the case of La Barceloneta, an emblematic fishing neighbourhood in the city centre of Barcelona, transformed for the 1992 Olympics in the city's seafront with seven kilometres of golden sands and some of the best seafood restaurants.