Graduation Year

2004

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.A.

Degree Granting Department

Geography

Major Professor

Bosman, Dr.Martin.

Keywords

Marginalization, Racial segregation, Urban development, City planning, Urban inequity

Abstract

Those who are given access to develop and plan our urban areas are in possession of great power and potential. With the vast sums of both private and governmental money associated with the creation and organization of urban areas, the motivations of those constructing plans and deciding developmental strategies need to be considered. When a city has a dual identity and is socially and spatially conflicted, then the task of planning equitably for all residents becomes even more complex. The extent to which planners address the needs of their community, and the divisions which may exist, reveals the intentions of the city regarding which residents are to be included within city life. This study examines these factors as they appertain to the city of St Petersburg, Florida which contains a population that is polarized racially, socially and spatially.

St. Petersburg promotes itself as a city of consumption, with a focus upon the tourist trade and its related support services. There exists an excluded 'underclass' which is incongruous alongside this promotion of the city as a tourist destination, but essential to the maintenance of the services needed. Faced with these conflicting city identities, the Developmental Services Department is under pressure to address resident contentions and to provide equitably for the city. Vision 2020 is a recent development which seeks to address some of the residents' concerns, and plan for the future development of the city. The document makes claims to citizen participation and asserts that it has addressed the concerns of residents. However, methods employed to illicit citizen participation failed to actively encourage participation from all social groups within the city and potentially alienated low-income residents.

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