The Decentralisation of Retailing and Other Services Has Had a Major Impact on Urban Areas. to What Extent Do You Agree with This Statement?

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Q. ‘The decentralisation of retailing and other services has had a major impact on urban areas.’ To what extent do you agree with this statement? City centres and central business districts are usually recognised as being places where businesses, major shopping areas, tourist attractions and major corporate companies are based. They reside in the city centre as it is the place where bodies of people will swarm to, making it successful in earning and boosting the economy. However, when decentralisation occurs, urban centres suffer many negative impacts. Urbanisation is the process of inner city functions and powers dispersing and redistributing away out of city to more sparse areas, usually on rural-urban fringe. Manchester is a particular city that has both suffered from decentralisation, but has also been somewhat successful in its attempt to tackle this issue. During the 1950’s, shops located in the city centre tended to only sell high order goods such as furniture and jewelry, attracting customers from all around and from out of the city, whereas shops selling low order goods like food were found local to individual neighbor hoods. At the start of the 1970’s, shops began to move and spread away from the CBD to areas on the outskirts of the city. This was due to reasons such as high city rents and taxes and the inability to expand services. Out of the city land is much cheaper, as is rent, for example the yearly rent for a mere metre square of land on Oxford Street, London is £4400, where as in Meadowhall, Sheffield, it is only £217. As the growth of suburbs increase, retailers and companies are in effect, chasing their money, relocating to the rural urban fringe to gain the new community’s wealth. The increase in road building has meant easy routes from the urban centre to out of the city, making new supermarkets and shopping facilities out of the city more
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