Town Planning Review

Integrating Ballymun?: Flawed progress in Ireland's largest estate regeneration scheme

Town Planning Review (2009), 80, (1), 83–108.

Abstract

Urban regeneration in the Republic of Ireland takes place in the context of the rapid, 'Celtic Tiger' economic growth of the 1990s. The boom transformed Irish society and led to greater affluence for many people, along with continuing and arguably worsening inequality for those excluded from its opportunities. In particular, Ireland's small social rented sector has become the focus of the country's most concentrated poverty and social exclusion. The Ballymun regeneration programme in North Dublin aims to facilitate physical, social and economic change in order to integrate the area more closely with the more affluent surrounding suburbs. This article reviews the issues involved in restructuring such a large area of social exclusion within a rapidly changing European capital city, using a framework that disaggregates the concept of integration into three elements: market, citizenship and reciprocity. With just over half the physical refurbishment complete, progress has been made but some fundamental issues remain. The article concludes that although substantial advancement has been made with physical regeneration, progress with wider economic and social integration has been uneven and in some cases flawed.

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Kintrea, Keith

Muir, Jenny