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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Entertainment for sale : urban entertainment centres and their impacts on the host communities Chow, Brian


Urban entertainment centres are perhaps the largest and latest kind of commercial development to combine the retail and entertainment industries in one location. These centres often combine new entertainment, dining, and retail activities to provide a pleasurable experience to their visitors. These centres have been rapidly spreading across the US and Canada, bringing economic, social, environmental, and political and planning changes to the communities. This thesis examines the local impacts of entertainment centres on the host community so that planners can recommend planning policies to mitigate some of the negative impacts. To contextualize urban entertainment centres, the definition, the history, and the characteristics of entertainment centres are examined. The definition of entertainment centres describes their general forms and functions. The history examines the recent growth of entertainment centres by analyzing the changing supply and demand of public entertainment from the 1870s to 1990s. The physical and experiential characteristics create and influence many of their community impacts. The impacts are analyzed within a template based on the community objectives to characterize how entertainment centres affect the communities. The analysis adopts the perspective of the host community, producing a comprehensive list of local community impacts on the host community. To exemplify the impacts, the template is applied to two case studies, International Village Shopping Centre in Downtown Vancouver and Riverport Sports and Entertainment Complex in Richmond. The selection of the case studies is based on the location difference: International Village Centre is the urban example and Riverport Complex is the suburban example. The location difference helps to explore a broad range of potential community impacts. The negative impacts of entertainment centres are examined. Possible planning recommendations to mitigate the negative impacts are developed by examining the negative impacts, while referring to the community objectives. The thesis concludes by discussing the potentials and limitations of the template and speculating on the future of entertainment centres.

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