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Decentralisation of Retailing Essay

Decentralisation is the process in which the population, retail and industry moves from urban CBD’s to the outer city. An out of town shopping centre is a group of shops and facilities that are located away from a town’s CBD. This movement will have positive and negative impacts on both the urban area and the outer city, where the out of town centres are built. The decentralisation of retailing and other services is happening because In order to sell goods, shops need to be located where people can get to them easily and its seen as easier to go to an out of town shopping centre than go to the CBD of a city. An advantage of this includes the social advantage is that there are many more free car parking spaces at out of town centres, whereas in a CBD parking is usually very hard to find and when it is found it is far away from the shops. This encourages shoppers to go to the out of town shopping centres as it is either more convenient, or cheaper. This also encourages families to go as the shops and facilities are a lot closer to the car parking spaces and their children and the elderly have less distance to walk. An economic advantage is that as a lot of shops and facilities open, more jobs will become available for the local people.

This would help the local area because it would lower the amount of people claiming benefits from the government. This would also positively impact the government because they’d receive more money from taxes and have to pay out less in benefits. Another social advantage is that there is a variety of shops that are all in one area. This benefits the people who go there because they won’t have to spend a long time walking to different shops. Also due to all of the facilities in the area, it makes a day out more enjoyable because the customers have more available activities, such as cinemas, coffee shops and in some cases mini golf. There are also many disadvantages of out of town shopping centres. A disadvantage to the economy and environment is that the out of town shopping centres take customers away from the CBD, which would lead to some shops being forced to close. This often leads to the city centre becoming run down. This would harm the environment because it would look unappealing and it becomes a waste of green space. The closure of these shops also would mean that a lot of people would lose their jobs, which means that the government would receive less money through taxes and would even lose money if the unemployed people went on benefits.

An economic disadvantage is that along with the shops in the CBD, the small businesses that are near the out of town shopping centre will suffer and possibly be forced to close. This would also lead to people losing their jobs and would mean that the government get less money through taxes. A social disadvantage is that the construction of the centre may upset some residents, due to the high levels of noise and the inevitable road congestion. An environmental disadvantage is that the shopping centre could be built on green-belt land. Also the construction could destroy wildlife habitats. Another social disadvantage is that the crime rate in the CBD will increase as it becomes more run down and people lose their jobs. This will give the area a bad reputation, lowering the chances of further investments from the government and also lowering the chances of more people buying houses there, meaning that less money goes into the economy.

The decentralisation of retailing and other services also has positive and negative impacts on the city centre. A negative impact is that urban deprivation could occur. Urban deprivation is when the standard of living in an urban area drops due to the area becoming run down. This could happen to the area because the shops lose customers to the out of town shopping centre. This causes the shops in the CBD to close and the people who worked there become unemployed, then these people are forced to claim benefits from the government, which means that the government don’t have the money to invest in the CBD. This then leads to an increase in crime, which makes the area look far more unappealing and gives it a poor reputation.

Some of the shops in the CBD are also unable to compete with the out of town shopping centre because they can’t offer free parking, whereas the centre can. This free parking can have a massive influence on where the customers go. However, a positive impact is that the area has a lot less cars running through it, which leads to little congestion and little noise and air pollution. This would ensure that the environment of the area would be less polluted then what it would be if the shops were still successful. It also makes the area a lot more peaceful for the locals who live there. I strongly agree with this statement because the above shows some of the positive and negative impacts it can have on urban areas, which are major impacts so therefore, out of tow shopping centres are affecting the CBDs in many ways.

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