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Benny Farm: The state, the community, and conflict

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Benny Farm: The state, the community, and conflict

Serge, Luba (2013) Benny Farm: The state, the community, and conflict. PhD thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

The Benny Farm case study is an examination of the urban redevelopment process in a project originally built for veterans of World War II. In 1991, the federal crown corporation, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), that owned and managed the project proposed to rehouse the aging tenants on a portion of the site and to demolish the existing buildings and sell the land. These plans were vigorously opposed by local activists as well as heritage preservationists and housing advocates. In 1998 these groups were consolidated into an organization that eventually was incorporated as the Fonds Foncier Communautaire Benny Farm, which sought to preserve the buildings and redevelop the project for social housing. During the same period the property was transferred to another crown corporation, the Canada Lands Company (CLC).
The evolution of the federal role as it moved from the welfare state to neoliberalism is examined. The transition from CMHC to CLC exemplifies the roll-back and roll-out stages of neoliberalism, as redevelopment of Benny Farm went from being primarily driven by the goal of divestment and transferring the property to the private sector to active leadership in defining the process and the outcome of the redevelopment. Through this evolution, changes in dealing with community resistance and opposition are highlighted as are the constraints and ability of community groups to sustain a lengthy process of contestation and opposition. Key to this process has been the role of Canada Lands Company, as a quasi-governmental agency. In possession of strategically located properties, the federal level is a major determinant in the shape of urban areas.

Divisions:Concordia University > School of Graduate Studies
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Serge, Luba
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Ph. D.
Program:Special Individualized Program
Date:July 2013
Thesis Supervisor(s):Shragge, Eric
ID Code:977917
Deposited By: LUBA SERGE
Deposited On:13 Jan 2014 14:45
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:45
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