Urban Revitalization in Central Areas and Gentrification: The Cases of Brazilian Large Cities and of the Sapucaí Street, in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais

Wednesday, 18 July 2018: 09:00
Oral Presentation
Clarissa VELOSO, Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas Gerais, Brazil
Luciana ANDRADE, Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas Gerais, Brazil
This paper aims to understand the relationship between gentrification and urban policies in central areas of large cities. The cases of Bairro Antigo in Recife, the harbor area of Rio de Janeiro, Pelourinho in Salvador, the Luz region in São Paulo and Belo Horizonte's downtown are starting points for discussing urban revitalization as one of the main causes for gentrification through the creation of cultural equipment, business and events centers and establishments for leisure, tourism and consumption. A case study about Sapucaí Street - located in Floresta, a pericentral, middle class neighborhood that borders Belo Horizonte's downtown (Minas Gerais, Brazil) - is used in the article. Since 2012, gastronomic and leisure establishments have been created in this urban road and in its surroundings and have attracted young publics. The changes in this region are analyzed from the point of view of urban renewal and the possibilities of consumption gentrification. To this end, observations and interviews were made with traders, employees and consumers in order to understand their motivations to invest and/or consume in that part of the city, and also to capture the collective representations about these spaces. This case, like several others in Brazil, shows the preponderance of consumption gentrification on residential gentrification and how it happens in micro spaces, not in the neighborhood as a whole. It also shows how the phenomenon in this street is linked to the public policies of revitalization of the city's downtown, border with the neighborhood.