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Spatial planning and retail trade: prerequisites in Riga
2003 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Now the modernization of retailing has reached East Europe. The Iron Curtain opened up and Latvia declared its independence year 1991. This also opened up the possibility of gaining market shares for foreign retail trade investors. To get an idea of the prerequisites for retailing in Riga, which is a very dominant capital city, knowledge about the development of the urban environment in general is valuable. Through greater knowledge and understanding for Rigas’ prerequisites the investments can turn out to be more profitable for both public and private interests. Therefore a comprehensive input of quite different areas –indicators- was made in part one of the thesis. City plans, accessibility, site/location and purchasing power form the ground for more detailed subjects. The concept of sustainability has been the foundation for these indicators (spatial, environmental, social and economical aspects). History and the relationship to Stockholm in the past and present, presentation of Latvia and Riga region in general as well as development tendencies in the world affecting Riga has been considered. This thesis is given an interdisciplinary touch when trying to bring together subjects dealt with in spatial planning and the subjects of interest to retailing. Theories, ideologies and knowledge about this are presented in part two. A complex network of people, ideologies, economy, environment and innovations has influenced development of cities through the centuries. At the end of the 19th century, planning was a way to conquer diseases and fires. Next step was to make the urban place as efficient and functional as possible, which led to a separation of areas into working, living and service areas. The innovation of the automobile has to a great extent influenced the planning of modern time and changed the spatial appearance and life in our cities greatly. Trade has developed through interplay with people at certain places, preferably where water meets land or roads cross. This also has contributed to the location, size and structure of cities of today. The last decades of retailing development have changed the way people do their shopping and the appearance of our cities radically, but retail trade has from another point of view become more accessible (for cars), cheaper and well-assorted. The description of the present state in Riga, field visits and interviews combined with the knowledge about the development of retailing and planning in Stockholm and other parts of the Western world formed the SWOT analysis and functioned as the foundation for the analysis and discussion presented in part three of the thesis. The city of Riga fights the same kind of problems as other cities concerning traffic jams, segregation and negative impact on the environment. But Riga also has several aces up its sleeves that should be well played. The capital city is gaining market shares concerning the interest of visiting this beautiful and multiple place, the citizens are still used to move by using public transportation, the traditional public markets are unique and have potential of being a part of a modern retailing environment, the compact structure of the city is a good condition for an energy efficient transport system, a growing middle class have the potential of buying more capital goods, it is connected to the rest of the world by good infrastructure and it is an advantage to have “the answers” to the positive and negative influences modern retailing has on the urban space. Riga has great potentials!

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Technology, spatial planning, retail trade, urban planning, sustainability, garden cities, edge cities, environment, location, infrastructure, public transportation, public markets, city centers, external shopping centers, East, Europe, city plans, accessibility, barriers, pedestrians, bikers, street traders, supermarkets, urbanization, traffic, ESDP
Keyword [sv]
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-48755ISRN: LTU-EX--03/244--SELocal ID: 62f9d99b-4e3a-4aca-8444-d6b40b8c3d90OAI: diva2:1022100
Subject / course
Student thesis, at least 30 credits
Educational program
Environmental Engineering, master's level
Validerat; 20101217 (root)Available from: 2016-10-04 Created: 2016-10-04Bibliographically approved

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