Gentrification and the sense of place: A case study in the Waterkwartier

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This research investigates the effects of gentrification in the Dutch context, specifically focusing on the Waterkwartier neighborhood in Nijmegen. This neighborhood is experiencing urban renewal, including the development of the nearby Waalfront. Over a ten-year period, the neighborhood population has grown by 18%, and this growth is expected to continue. This growth has led to changes in the neighborhood's character and has created challenges related to social cohesion and tensions between long-term residents and newcomers. The research seeks to comprehend how gentrification shapes residents' "sense of place" and their role in this process. The research employs a mixed-methods approach, including semi-structured interviews and a survey, to collect data. The results indicate differing perceptions of "sense of place" between old and new residents, with noticeable differences in terms of their connection to the neighborhood, perceptions of divisions, and changes in the neighborhood's identity. These differences are more nuanced when explored through qualitative analysis. Notably, the research also highlights indirect displacement of long-term residents due to increased costs of living. Overall, the study underscores the complex roles that residents play in the gentrification process, offering insights into how they perceive their surroundings and engage with the changes happening in their neighborhood.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen