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Culture based Sustainaibility in Urban Regeneration Strategies. Integration of the bottom-up approach in the city center of Monterrey, Mexico
Culture has been used as a leading mean for urban regeneration projects, because it is a permeable concept towards other areas of development. In recent decades, it has been exposed that the city center of Monterrey in México, as other historical city centers is suffering from processes related to deterioration and abandonment, enhancing the perverse promotion of city sprawl. In these order of ideas, the public sector has been focused on the deployment of urban regeneration strategies with a profound cultural involvement. Based on this study-case, this exploration aims to provide a characterization of the regeneration strategies that have been deployed in this city center. Moreover, from the implemented approach in the urban regeneration, emerge a perception that is exposing an overall intent to recognize the ways in which the culture, as an approach, is a visible element throughout the urban transformation. The methodological tools supporting this examination is initially a documental review for a general understanding of the historical process of the urban reconfiguration. Secondly, using a qualitative method, regeneration projects have been analyzed and examined based on personal interviews, taking into account key actors representing the different bottom-up and top-down perspectives. As results, this exploration is an advancement on the recognition of the urban reconfiguration patterns in the recent history of the study-case. Also, the qualitative analysis presents a contrasted outcome; since urban interventions that arise from local residents are regarded in a positive way. However, top-down interventions are not considered in the same manner; despite the quality and complexity of the projects. They have not been able to achieve the expected objectives, and thus inhabitants see the official initiatives as an incomplete accomplishment. Consequently, to move towards the recognition of the cultural sustainability as a driver in through who are managing to transform the urban image requires a bottom-up involvement in the top-down approach, as an integrated effort to recognized not only the results but the relevance of the process itself.