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Gentrification: Barrio Alto, Chiado and Principe Real

Last week we were given the task to research and answer the question “What is the future of Gentrification in Lisbon after Covid?” To be able to answer the question we chose to investigate the Barrio Alto, Principe Real and Chiado neighborhoods. We did Desk Research, developed 3 hypotheses and then we went out and did field research to see if our hypotheses were correct or not.

On this document you can find out every step, document and information about how we answer the question above.

We divide our work in 3 categories to approach the neighborhoods, in every category we define one hypothesis:


After we captured all the signals based in our hypothesis, we identified five patterns:

  1. Empty Neighborhoods during the day and full at night

  2. First floors renovated by the company, but the other part of the building neglected

  3. Regulatory building notices, and new flats advertisement

  4. Concentration of entertainment venues and people in the main streets

  5. Hipsters during the day and night.

We identified 4 tribes:


Elderly locals


Young families

When we had all the signs, tribes and patterns, we identified one micro trend in the city:The city is looking to expand from the main streets to the inner streets of the neighbourhoods (Barrio Alto, Chiado & Príncipe Real).”

After all the process, we identified the current and future scenario for Gentrification on Lisbon

Current Scenario:

"Today, the Principe Real, Barrio Alto & Chiado neighborhoods present an increase in the tourist offer, as well as the expansion of commerce to secondary streets of these neighborhoods. There are many places focused on an increasingly hipster users and with a higher income, but at the same time, there are some empty or abandoned commercial spaces, also you see more Portuguese than international tourists. "

Future Scenario:

“These neighborhoods continue with a slow gentrification due to COVID 19, new policies to protect the economy of the city and provide it to new crises that arise. The neighborhoods will change their social dynamics to integrate local and tourist demand.

The gastronomic and nightlife trade will continue to expand towards the interior of the neighborhoods, displacing local residents and giving way to bohemian tourists.


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