The FUNCTION of an area is its reason or purpose for
being. In urban areas this relates to the purpose of a land use for
residential areas, recreation, industry etc. The dominant function in
different cities varies, for example, London is known for its function as a
financial centre, whilst Newcastle is now attempting to be a science city.
Functions can change over time as well, in Newcastle the original function was
as a coal mining region, which then changed to heavy industry and manufacturing
with ship building and armaments at the forefront, and presently high tech
industries and education dominate.
WITHIN cities land use and function can vary widely.
Think about it
Using the Google map below and street view complete
this chart on city functions
Attempt the scatter diagram at the base of the page
The central part of cities is known as the Central Business District.
This is often the original site of the settlement where the city
originally started and contains
services, education facilities and businesses. It often has the highest
buildings and is the most accessible area of the city. The
CBD of Newcastle can be found
at the central Southern part of the city.It has the central motorway, the coast road, the national train line and
the metro routes.It is the most
accessible part of the city and for that reason the land values are highest and
retailers such as HMV and major offices and businesses can be found here.The CBD is also on the original site of the settlement, selected because
it was the furthest point downstream on the river Tyne that could be crossed and
then bridged (bridging point), it was also high up above the river against
flooding but close enough to allow water access (wet point site).Other good original site factors are that the surrounding land would have
been great for farming and locally available stone and wood was available for
building, it was also high up so a good defensive site.The new CBD has the highest buildings to maximise the use of the land,
the highest building density, some of the newest buildings due to regeneration
(e.g. the Gate) and some of the oldest (e.g. the Theatre Royal), it also has
entertainment and social functions such as the universities and the Civic
The twilight zone - mixed industrial and
residential land use in Wallsend
The inner city
Outside of the CBD is a zone known as the INNER CITY or the TWILIGHT zone.
This is a mixture of old industrial housing, often terraces, and industry. These
areas would have been constructed in the industrial revolution.
In Newcastle the industry
is found in wedges that follow the river Tyne.This is the traditional secondary industries of armaments and ship
building that needed the river and rail links to import heavy raw materials and
export heavy finished goods.Some
lighter footloose industries (including high tech firms) can be found on the
edge of the city where the land is cheaper (e.g. Sage at NewcastleGreatPark) and where the access
Just outside of the Inner city area tends to be another area of low class
residential housing. These have either very small or no gardens, join
other houses on either side and have no more than 3 bedrooms.
In Newcastle terraced housing
tends to follow the
heavy industry as the workers who worked in the heavy industries traditionally
had to walk to work.Areas such as
Scotswood, Benwell, Heaton and Walker have large areas of long rows of terraces
with small gardens.
The more expensive residential housing that was built between the 2 World Wars
is found even further from the CBD. This often comprises semi detached and
detached housing and council estates. In Newcastle, the
semi-detached housing and detached
housing can be found further away from the city, in areas where people can
afford more land for gardens, bigger houses and at a distance from the old (and
now departed) heavy industries.These areas have cul de sacs, curved tree lined streets,
and the houses have garages and are often expensive.Gosforth and High Heaton and Long Benton are included in these zones.
There are also large areas of open
space in Newcastle,included the town moor which is protected by
by-laws, parks such as Jesmond Dene and large areas of playing fields scattered
around the city to service the populations of various residential areas.