European urban and regional studies vol:8 issue:2 pages:145-160
Has large-scale urban regeneration in general and Euralille in particular affected the social and economic harmony of the Lille Metropolis, the largest northern agglomeration of France? To answer this question, the impact of large-scale urban development projects on real estate, housing and job markets is evaluated. It is found that Euralille plays in the first instance an emblematic role in the economic development and social reconstruction of the Lille community. Its impact on socio-economic 're-zoning' of the metropolis is however far from just symbolic. It has set the trend to a new type of corporate estates, it has disturbed the construction cycle of new offices in other parts of the urban region, and it has taken the lead in the creation of a 'middle-market' retail system attracting customers from far beyond the Lille agglomeration to its shopping arcades. Moreover, together with other downtown real estate initiatives, it has fuelled the displacement of lower-income housing to cheaper areas of the Metropolis.