Gentrification Induced Streetscape Changes

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Gentrification Induced Streetscape Changes

Case Study: Jangali Maharaj Road ,Pune

Shruti Joshi

Professor

Dr. B. N. College of Architecture Pune, India

Dr.Vasudha Gokhale

Professor

Dr. B.N. College of Architecture.

Pune, India

Abstract Most of the Indian cities, have extended their limits and have grown beyond. Urban lives are changing, mutating, and getting transformed and thus giving rise to a new socio- economic and spatial order that is changing the culture and the character of established urban centers. This process is often coupled with gentrification. The concept of gentrification has been extensively used in context of neighborhood renewal process. The exact meaning of the term and its parameters and indicators has always been a subject of debate. India is undergoing a major transit phase of urbanization. A sense of continuity that existed in the earlier urban centers is influenced by the private capital. This results in the physical manifestation through new built forms, new materials and new way of life that sees changes in socio -spatial organization of urban areas and its inhabitants. India did not undergo renewal of its cities entirely afresh and hence the development has been progressive. This has steadily resulted in gentrifying cityscapes and restructuring of its buildings with new facades and changes in architectural character and building use representing Gentrification. This research examines the changes in the pattern of land use and character of streetscape that has given rise to a new architectural form defining the street character in the city of Pune with Jangali Maharaj Road as a case. It analyses the changes in the built environment due to physical and social upgrading that has a big influence on the architectural character of the place. The analysis is aimed to present a nuanced picture of gentrification phenomenon on streetscape in Indian cities for architects, planners, and policy makers to facilitate them to address this issue in future urban development endeavors.

KeywordsStreetscape; cityscape; ,gentrification; landuse pattern; built environment; Pune

  1. INTRODUCTION

    Urban studies primarily concentrate on the changing composition of the city and its streetscape, and many times it overlooks the underlying process in their narratives. India, like many other countries, is rapidly urbanizing. Urbanization plays a vital role in changing the streetscapes of the cities. Urbanization brings out social and cultural changes in community life, symbolizing modernization [1]. Streets connect people with their built environment and are an essential aspect of people's response to the surroundings [2]. The street creates a link between buildings. The streetscape

    consists of a street and compound walls, building facades including cladding material, architectural elements, trees, etc. The streets become a domain of a local community and add to the character of the place [3]. Streetscape and cityscapes together make the character of the area. Urban lives are changing, mutating, and transforming, thus giving rise to a new socioeconomic and spatial order changing the culture and character of established urban centers. Urban regeneration, urban renewal, urban revitalization are some of the processes that lead to urban growth. The phenomena that lead to the metamorphosis of the urban areas, is referred to as gentrification. It is essential to distinguish between gentrification, urban renewal, and urbanization. Although very similar and sometimes used interchangeably, they are different concepts with different impacts [4].

  2. GENTRIFICATION

    1. Concept and process of Gentrification

      Ruth Glass, an urban sociologist, introduced the term "gentrification" in Britain in 1964. She referred to both physical improvement and social change in housing and housing ownership [5] [6]. Gentrification also refers to the influx of private-market investment capital into major urban areas. This aspect was more immediately visible in the architectural restoration of ancient buildings and the clustering of new cultural amenities in the urban center. It is because of a shift in corporate investment and a matching increase in the urban service sector. Gentrification was originally characterized as a process of neighborhood change that causes a spatial reshuffling among communities and metropolitan areas on various levels [7]. The concept involves the replacement of land users with those of higher socioeconomic status, which also involves changes in the built environment through a process of transforming a vacant area or a locality into an upgraded residential or commercial area for an upper- income group by replacement of land users. In her study of gentrification in Canada, Helene Belanger finds that there are tensions between long-time residents and newer ones about lifestyle choices and the model of development of the neighborhood [8]. The definition of gentrification has evolved, moving away from Ruth Glass's classic definition [9].

      Examples in New York City neighborhoods have highlighted the transformation of small stores into luxury restaurants and boutiques. This form of business gentrification has become comparable to residential gentrification [10]. Rachel Meltzer

      [11] discusses gentrification's impact on local businesses. Her findings for New York City show that although existing small businesses are likely to be displaced in gentrifying neighborhoods, they are as well possible to be displaced in non-gentrifying neighborhoods; outside investments happen in response to the changes in the consumer demands. Branded outlets, retail chains may increase, affecting local shops and local inhabitants [12] [11]. Yoon and Park [5] cite the example in which Neil Smith explains the cause of gentrification through rent-gap theory, which is based on concepts of the potential land value and capitalized land value. Potential land value is defined as the worth of land that can be realized when it is used to its full potential. The capitalized land value is the worth of the land's current use [13] [14]. The process is not just restricted to large cities. However, it has steadily spread to the suburbs and rural areas, causing physical changes in the built environment, increasing property values, and eventually driving out the poor [15]. Global, national, and city dynamics influence the current gentrification pattern [16]. Gentrification currently occurs in many parts of the world, and the use of the term has expanded its coverage [17].

    2. Gentrification in India

    Gentrification is both a cultural and an economic process that dramatically alters the way people live in a neighborhood [7]. Indian cities have a wide range of development that constitutes an uneven pattern of utopian and dystopian spaces. India did not undergo renewal of its cities entirely afresh, and hence the development has been progressive. It has steadily resulted in gentrifying cityscapes and restructuring its buildings with new facades and changes in architectural character and building use representing gentrification. One of the impacts of gentrification to be considered is cultural displacement. The local inhabitants of the area can stay in the newly upgraded areas Pune, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad have become the new haven for the Information age and IT sector [18]. Meanwhile, gated communities, townships, fashionably gentrified suburbs are marketed as lifestyle fantasies for the middle-income group. The old city areas of many Indian cities were occupied mainly by lower middle class nd working-class people. They had their houses in dilapidated conditions, leading to a new paradoxical urban form. The architectural expression in most of the Indian cities aims at the makeover and embellishments driven by new materials in the market, rather than driven by any style.

    Accelerated urban growth since the 1990s has led to the rise of new middle-income groups that have shaped Indian cities. The most extensive and most rapid growth in the middle class is experienced by the global urban South [19] [20]. It has often resulted in Gentrification, causing the up gradation of real estate values and the cityscape. It has also led people to migrate to other parts of the city for various reasons like affordability, changed cultural environment, or lack of

    amenities. Liberalization in India acted as the first catalyst of change for the housing industry, as the government and financial institutions started encouraging the process of taking loans to buy property. Houses or properties were purchased as units to live in rather than as investments. Banks mostly availed home loans, while people saved up to invest in their own homes. Another significant change was the builder being mandated to provide civic amenities such as roads and gardens to their customers. The IT boom in the late 1990s resulted in a tectonic shift in the real estate industry, both on the supply and the demand side. Moreover, the infusion of massive amounts of capital into neighborhoods resulted in a loss of cultural diversity and uniformity of streetscapes and business types. New construction and renovation or aesthetic and commercial changes were observed with the visible streetscape changes. This paper focuses on the change in the building facades, materials, and the changing streetscape induced due to gentrification.

  3. CASE STUDY: J.M. ROAD, PUNE

    For a long and of the engineering industry, Pune, Maharashtras second-largest city after Mumbai, has been a hub for education for over five decades. However, in the last two and a half odd decades, it has seen a virtual metamorphosis, evolving from a quiet, peaceful town once known as a pensioners paradise or for a pleasant weekend getaway into a metro bustling with activity. It now is a leading growth hub of education, leading IT destination, logistic hub, and a renowned center for the auto, design, and white goods industries. With the coming of the Information Technology Age, the last decade of the 20th century saw Pune discover new pastures and become the IT hub of the state. Pune, the cultural capital of Maharashtra, epitomizes Marathi culture, which emphasizes education, arts and crafts, music, and theatre. Pune culture reflects a blend of traditions with modernity. Jangali Maharaj Road, a major arterial road in the heart of Pune, is now a dynamic multi-cultural and mixed-class area going for changes in its built environment. Led by a new generation of entrepreneurs, Jangali Maharaj road is getting a facelift and being re-imagined as a commercial activity hub.

    1. Jangali Maharaj road through history

      This area where the Jangali Maharaj road stands today was a horticulture land with many fruit-bearing trees like peru, chikku, sitaphal, and mango (amrai) on both sides of the path. Later the tall sticks were brought from Mahabaleshwar and hung kerosene lamps along this pathway between Lakdi pul to Pataleshwar temple for the benefit of the society at large. Firstly, farming activities started in the early 1900sfollowed by the small commercial activity of selling sugarcane juice that operated on bullocks. In addition, selling the animal fodder referred to as Ganji, used for horses and cattle, started. The sugarcane juice centers became a place of public meetings in the evening for people to gather and loiter around. The Jangali maharaj samdhi temple also stood at one end and Kahndoji Baba mandir at the other end. The area contained

      dense trees where a road was built and named Jangali Maharaj road.

      Fig.1(a). Pre independence Jangali Maharaj road Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s1b6K7k0OQE

      The area had river on one side and dense fruit bearing trees on the other side and thus attracted people . It became a leisure space promoting evening walks, entertaining, and leisure activities along the riverside. Many people flocked to this area, and commercial shops and businesses started to cater to the needs of the people involved in leisure activities. Development of educational institutions nearby that included Fergusson college (1885), BMCC (1943), Modern high school (1934) and its college and, Marathwada Mitramandal educational campus (1967), triggered the establishment of many business and commercial activities. Due to the increase in students in the vicinity, new stores catering to educational needs like stationery stores started in a large number. A significant change was observed in the development pattern due to providing lodging and staying facilities for students, professionals, and tourists. The riverside area of the road has monuments like the Rani Laxmi bai statue, historic theatre Balgandharva Rangamandir, Sambhaji garden, and they contributed to a great and relaxing environment. The residential units converted into lodges provided clean and healthy eating places popularly known as Khanaval mess for the student population. Besides good hotels and eating outlets attracted visitors or tourists. The beautifully spread giant trees forming a canopy along the road promoted leisure- oriented activities.

    2. Old Street Character

      In the 1930s, Pune constructed many buildings, especially outside paths. These designs adapted to their new forms of living. They readily used new building materials and

      techniques, with the influence of Classical, Gothic, and Baroque neo-styles, aesthetics of the then-current colonial modernist (Melsens, 2020)[21].

      Fig.1(b). The building types constructed around the pre- independence period were bungalows (large, detached residences) and the introduction of modest two or three-story tenement structures, consisting of two tenements on each floor and a central staircase, created as rental housing. This residential structure displays improvised vernacular architecture with a sloping tin roof and vernacular balcony railing

      Fig.1(b). The building types constructed around the pre- independence period were bungalows (large, detached residences) and the introduction of modest two or three-story tenement structures, consisting of two tenements on each floor and a central staircase, created as rental housing. This residential structure displays improvised vernacular architecture with a sloping tin roof and vernacular balcony railing

      Sparse but noticeable Western-style influences seen in portholes, colored plaster decorations, and keystone

      Fig.2. A confluence of eclectic revivalist styles, this bungalow shows a combination of Classical, Gothic, and Baroque neo-styles. Its architectural character comprised Doric columns, baluster railing, folding entablature, and Indo-Saracenic features in arches and ornamentation.

      Fig.2. A confluence of eclectic revivalist styles, this bungalow shows a combination of Classical, Gothic, and Baroque neo-styles. Its architectural character comprised Doric columns, baluster railing, folding entablature, and Indo-Saracenic features in arches and ornamentation.

      plasterwork. So, a pattern that seems to emerge was that of many stone buildings with a touch of a few revivalist elements like Indo-Saracenic features regarding Indian traditional forms and materials.

      It created a contemporary language for different parts of the building. The Khandki or rectangular stonework of the pilasters is alternated in between by rough rectangular or hexagon-shaped stonework to provide a play of texture.

      Fig.3. This residential structure is a hybrid of many styles showing projecting balconies with jail, railings. A central staircase stands out with art deco-styled metal grills for staircase block and renaissance pediment an a combination of ashlar and rusticated stone masonry.

      Fig.3. This residential structure is a hybrid of many styles showing projecting balconies with jail, railings. A central staircase stands out with art deco-styled metal grills for staircase block and renaissance pediment and a combination of ashlar and rusticated stone masonry.

      Fig. 4. This residential structure is a hybrid of many styles showing projecting balconies with stone jail, railings. Central staircase stands out with art deco styled metal grills for staircase block and renaissance pediment, and combination of ashlar and rusticated stone masonry.

      Fig. 4. This residential structure is a hybrid of many styles showing projecting balconies with stone jail, railings. Central staircase stands out with art deco styled metal grills for staircase block and renaissance pediment, and combination of ashlar and rusticated stone masonry.

      Porthole or square windows, slender and elongated cornices, and rubble masonry were some of the critical elements of expression.

      At the beginning of Jangali Maharaj road, a building on Deccan contained shops and apartments. It was characterized by concave balconies and cornices, shapes that became easily mouldable in reinforced concrete. The buildings had borrowed styles. In residential projects, borrowing was less than institutional buildings and did away with non-functional façade ornamentation.

      Fig. 6. It is a modern vernacular building with a central balcony and two projecting balconies. Art deco influences cement color and decoration, portholes. A traditional element like gabled roofs and balcony grills, and louvered ventilators.

      Fig. 6. It is a modern vernacular building with a central balcony and two projecting balconies. Art deco influences cement color and decoration, portholes. A traditional element like gabled roofs and balcony grills, and louvered ventilators.

      Compositions did not follow any particular style and explored the use of balconies, boxed window frames, and chajjas for each window individually. They can be described as a modernist vernacular.

      Fig .7. Art deco style with curved chajja, metal grills for balcony and windows. Rounded corners, concrete, and stucco painted in pastel colors, horizontal bands, flat roof, etc.

      Fig .7. Art deco style with curved chajja, metal grills for balcony and windows. Rounded corners, concrete, and stucco painted in pastel colors, horizontal bands, flat roof, etc.

      A few floral and fan motives in plaster are typical for Art Deco. Around the 1950s, many structures were influenced by Art Deco in its use of color, decoration, and new material finishes and techniques based on cement and color pigments. White- or pastel-coloured walls against the decorative metal grillwork of the windows, painted cornices, and striped, or waved plasterwork grooves were also seen in some places. There were load-bearing brick walls and reinforced concrete floor slabs in many residential projects. Jangali Maharaj road was initially a residential district area with small, elegant bungalows.

      Fig.5. This residential structure, now used for commercial activity, is load bearing with rectangular stone facades and triangular pedimented roofs borrowed from traditional vernacular style: the portholes, colored concrete strips, and metal grill windows showing art deco influence.

      Fig.5. This residential structure, now used for commercial activity, is load bearing with rectangular stone facades and triangular pedimented roofs borrowed from traditional vernacular style: the portholes, colored concrete strips, and metal grill windows showing art deco influence.

      Fig.8. This structure is now a commercial building is a mix of vernacular style with stone masonry and plastered surfaces, and also has art deco influence seen in curved balconies, horizontal lines, metal railings, and grills for balcony.

      Fig.8. This structure is now a commercial building is a mix of vernacular style with stone masonry and plastered surfaces, and also has art deco influence seen in curved balconies, horizontal lines, metal railings, and grills for balcony.

      Fig. 9. Art deco style with curved chajja, metal grills for balcony and windows. Rounded corners, concrete and stucco painted in pastel colors, horizontal bands, flat roof, etc.

      Fig. 9. Art deco style with curved chajja, metal grills for balcony and windows. Rounded corners, concrete and stucco painted in pastel colors, horizontal bands, flat roof, etc.

      The load-bearing structures with curvature, round columns, projecting balconies provided an aesthetically pleasing look. Between 1930 and 1960, then, there was no simple chronological progression from buildings referencing traditional Indian architecture to Art Deco and further to a more austere vernacular modern [21].

    3. Change in Streetscape.

    There has been a significant change in the streetscape as seen from the visual below.

    Fig. 10. Contemporary modern with RCC framed structure and glass skin for façade.

    Fig. 10. Contemporary modern with RCC framed structure and glass skin for façade.

    Fig.11. Contemporary modern, RCC structure with glass and alucobond panel cladding on external facades

    Fig.11. Contemporary modern, RCC structure with glass and alucobond panel cladding on external facades

    Fig. 12 . Typical Character of Building near present day Deccan Garware subway in 1960s

    Credits: Rajiv Dandekar: published in TOI on July 14, 1961

    Fig. 12 . Typical Character of Building near present day Deccan Garware subway in 1960s

    Credits: Rajiv Dandekar: published in TOI on July 14, 1961

    Fig. 13. Present day Garware underpass

    Fig. 13. Present day Garware underpass

    Fig .16. Deccan bus Terminal in 1970s Source: Facebook group Pune

    Fig.14. Hind Vijay talkies of 1960s Replaced by Natraj Theater in 1980s

    Source: Vivek Sabnis,Pune Nostalgia calender

    Fig.17. Deccan bus Terminal in 2000

    Fig.14. Hind Vijay talkies of 1960s Replaced by Natraj Theater in 1980s

    Source: Vivek Sabnis,Pune Nostalgia calender

    Fig.17. Deccan bus Terminal in 2000

    Fig.15. Natraj Theater demolished to have Bhosale Shinde Arcade in its place.

    Fig.15. Natraj Theater demolished to have Bhosale Shinde Arcade in its place.

  4. CONCLUSIONS

The initial residential skyline of the Jangali Maharaj road has changed a few times due to various impetuses. The 1961 floods saw significant damage to the buildings. The structures that came up in the mid-1960s were residential structures with the beginning of some commercial activity. Initially, there were small bungalows, and then small shops in the bungalows compounds were seen. Jangali Maharaj road saw a second significant change, coming up of hotels, lodging, and Boarding type of structures. The changes seen in the residential areas, in its building facades and constructions, right from bungalows to apartments to the streetscapes of the lanes, reflected these changes. Earlier beautiful bungalows with curved lines, round columns, load-bearing structures were very aesthetically pleasing to look at. They had lovely projecting balconies. The single or two, the three-storey structure now gave way to multistorey buildings in the 1980s or early 1990s for commercial uses. The materials have changed, new construction techniques came in, and glass facia and metal sheet claddings were introduced. Now there are glass buildings found on this road. The private capital has influenced a sense

of continuity that existed in the earlier urban centers. It resulted in the physical manifestation through new built forms, new materials, and a new way of life that saw changes in the socio- spatial organization of urban areas and the local residents. A loss of identity seems to come over the area. The change in physical ambiance leads to less favorable conditions for residential purposes as well as the market-driven economy has led to a few displacements. It has caused a chang in the character of the locality and a pattern of change seen from residential to local commercial to branded stores coming up along the road.

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