- Le Medi: mediterraan gevoel te koop in Rotterdam: over de aantrekkingskracht van gethematiseerde woningbouw voor de nieuwe stedelijke middenklasse
- Pages (from-to)
- Issue number
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
‘Le medi’: buying a mediterranean feeling in Rotterdam
Urban renewal of low-income neighbourhoods is frequently accompanied by branding of neighbourhoods. Planners aim to attract the middle-class by developing new housing which is theme oriented. The theming of the new housing combines an eye-catching architecture which promises uniqueness and distinction with a sophisticated branding of the new estates. The presented case study of Le Medi is a new project in the low income neighbourhood Bospolder-Tussendijken in Rotterdam. The planners are applying the theme ‘Mediterranean atmosphere’ with some symbolic reference to Moroccan culture and hope to evoke positive feelings with the brand ‘Living where the sun is always shining’. The article addresses the question of how theming effects the decision of middle class citizens to buy a house in Le Medi. Buyers were interviewed about their motivations, their moral and esthetical judgments and their emotions to settle in Bospolder-Tussendijken. Although the effects of the sophisticated branding turn out to be limited, the findings suggest that the applied theming plays an important role in the identity construction of the buyers, who interpret the ‘Mediterranean atmosphere’ in very different ways depending on their sociocultural background.
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