Barcelona is the city which has Mediterranean traditions and multicultural population. A tourism site uses these sentences to describe the city.
“Barcelona sited between the sea and the mountains has found a formidable balance: a foot in the traditional things and the other in the avant-garde. Barcelona has the reputation of being the most cosmopolitan, modern and avant-garde city in Spain and it has renewed for the 1992 Olympic Games.” - from www.barcelona.com
As we can see in this definition, gentrification has a big role in the history of Barcelona.
Sant Pere, Santa Caterina i la Ribera, the neighborhood located in the city centre with many tourists spots, popular landmarks. They draws a huge number of expats and tourists come to Barcelona every year that made partially this city become one of the top destinations in Europe.
This neighborhood has many courtyards, “plazas” connected by streets. Gentrified places create new zones for communities. They can contact each other in public areas. For now, we can say gentrification did not eliminate multicultural communities in this neighborhood. However, we should track the results to see what will happen after a pandemic.
Based on the differences after observation, we divided this neighborhood into 2 areas: Sant Pere and El Born
Sant Pere, a trendy area of an ancient part filled with indie fashion shops and craft coffee spots. It's home to art nouveau concert hall, Palau de la Música Catalana, and the Santa Caterina Market, where seafood, cured hams and Catalan cheeses are sold under a vast mosaic-covered roof. At night, a young crowd heads to the local bars for wine and gourmet tapas.
However, the neighborhood is keeping its roots during the pandemic, in addition to a general lockdown that caused the closure of most of the shops (restaurant, bar, clothes shops etc) the crime within the neighborhood is increasing and most of the people feel afraid for that.
“After Covid-19, the criminality seems increased, together with poverty, which then translates into more people living on the street. I does not feel safe at night walking home and most of the people seem to have Lost Their Mind and to be affected by some sort of craziness: people tend to scream, get drunk on the street”
A 21-year-olds student who is living in this neighbourhood shared interesting information regarding the area.
While Sant Pere area has more expats and local people are living there, El Born area used to be a crowded area, full of tourists, but now fewer people around there and there is a crazy number of premises available for rent with economic prices.
In every step we walk in El Born area, we found too many empty flats and premises are available for rent.
Everything has changed a lot, basically the people used to be focused on tourism, culture, history for business and work but now they have the opportunity for looking for other fields or objectives to bring new value for their neighborhood. They hope when tourists come back they will see this area with a higher level, diversity. Moreover, we hope they will bring new waves to this neighborhood and even create new job aspects for unemployed people, reduce crimes...
For example: focus on the domestic people, beauty industry, leisure, or offering other human essential needs,...
Beauty services still remain and even develop more
FROM TOURIST TO LOCAL
It is widely accepted that local business has become a principal target and It needs to be developed for dealing with the crisis.
People know big chain brands and businesses can survive easily but their local stores need their help. People do their shopping from local markets, local stores.