A Red Road to Regeneration in Scotland? A Common Weal approach to urban regeneration

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report


On the 3rd of April 2014, the media machine of the Glasgow Commonwealth Games issued a press release to the title of ‘Dramatic end of Red Road creates bold symbol for Games’ celebration of city rebirth’.(1) Within ten days, the proposal to feature the live demolition of five unoccupied blocks of flats in the north east of Glasgow, which had already been earmarked for dismantling in 2014-15, as part of the Games’ Opening Ceremony had been dropped,(2) following an online petition that attracted over 17,000 signatories.(3)(4)
Regeneration rarely enthuses, enrages or engages the national consciousness. More typically, regeneration is a local concern, focused on a particular neighbourhood or locality, initiated or directed by some extra-local regional or municipal agency, working to achieve some overarching national objective. Regeneration defines what has been ‘degenerated’, in order for a clearly specified programme of ‘regeneration’ to take place, in its’ place. In some respects, Red Road was different. Although a £60million programme of regeneration is envisaged over the next ten years for the area of which it is part,(5) the ‘degeneration’ was to be promoted as a public spectacle to showcase the wider city and its’ direction of travel. The extent to which the backlash to Red Road marks a turning point that opens up the possibility of an alternative Common Weal future for regeneration in Scotland is considered in this paper.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationGlasgow
PublisherCommon Weal
Commissioning bodyCommon Weal
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • poverty
  • regeneration
  • Glasgow
  • Glasgow Commonwealth Games
  • Red Road


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