Questioning ‘Inclusivity’ Of Public Spaces In Post-Industrial Cities: The Case Of Haymarket Bus Station, Newcastle Upon Tyne

Public spaces, one of the essential components of cities for centuries, have become the focus of broad concern for more than two decades (Francis, 1987; Carr, et al., 1992; Tibbalds, 1992; Mitchell, 1996; Madanipour, 2000). Attractive and alluring public spaces have been placed at the centre of many post-industrial cities. Starting from the 1980s, public spaces have been also increasingly used as the key components of city-marketing and urban regeneration programmes in Britain (Crilley, 1993; Goodwin, 1993; Sadler, 1993; Hubbard, 1995; Hall and Hubbard, 1996). Despite the resurgence of broad interest in public spaces, urban design and planning literature, frequently hinting at the diminishing ‘inclusivity’ of public spaces in post-industrial cities, has raised the question of how far they are truly ‘inclusive’. This article is set up to address this question by examining in depth the Haymarket Bus Station (HBS), a public space redeveloped in the 1990s in the city centre of Newcastle upon Tyne as a part of the image-led public realm improvement strategy (1). While the bus station was built through manufactured and imported images, and was turned into an instrument to revitalise the north-west edge of the city centre, it has experienced a significant change in its ‘inclusivity’. The paper aims to explore this change. It first defines the term of ‘inclusive public space’, and introduces the framework for measuring the extent of ‘inclusivity’ of a public space. Then, it sets the HBS in a wider context and looks into the Newcastle’s shift from a heavily-industrialised city to a post-industrial city, as well as the rising significance of the city’s public spaces within the economic restructuring of the 1980s and 1990s. Third, it investigates before, during and after the HBS scheme with the help of the four dimensions of ‘access’. Finally, the paper discusses the findings of the case study in relation to similar studies on public spaces in post-industrial cities, and seeks to give clues for urban planning and design practice.


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Citation Formats
Z. M. Akkar Ercan, “Questioning ‘Inclusivity’ Of Public Spaces In Post-Industrial Cities: The Case Of Haymarket Bus Station, Newcastle Upon Tyne,” ODTÜ Mimarlık Fakültesi Dergisi, vol. 22, no. 2, pp. 1–24, 2005, Accessed: 00, 2021. [Online]. Available: