Sustainable plot-based urban regeneration and traditional masterplanning practice in Glasgow

Barbour, GC, Romice, O & Porta, S 2016, ‘Sustainable plot-based urban regeneration and traditional masterplanning practice in GlasgowOpen House International, vol 41, no. 4, pp. 15-22.
Conventional approaches to housing development in regeneration areas are failing to provide effective supply on the many derelict and vacant sites currently available in inner city Glasgow, exacerbating the loss of households to the suburbs, and leaving behind abundant developable but vacant land. Plot-based urbanism offers an innovative approach to development, based on the creation and maintenance of a structure made up of fine-grained elements, in the form of plots, capable of incremental development, by a range of agencies. The proposed approach is based on historical and morphological study of changing urban form and control in Glasgow; it suggests that the disaggregated pattern of land subdivision characteristic of the 19th century city remains of great relevance for future development. Initial results of the study suggest that the physical form and organisation of urban land might relate to the degree of self-organisation possible at neighbourhood level.
By relating the physical characteristics and patterns of control of individual plots of land to the flow of investment into urban development, this study assists future master planning and investment in regeneration of city neighbourhoods, by suggesting ways of making investment more informed, and the development process more responsive, to the changing priorities which are an integral aspect of urban change. We argue that the publicly-funded sector could adopt the role of provider of opportunity for housing by others, capable of taking on the task of small-scale house building, within a strategically-sound framework established and guided by the publicly-funded sector itself, bringing increased control over the housing process to those participating in it.