(January 2010) Urban tourism in converted cities: a comparison between Torino and Glasgow

Urban tourism in converted cities: a comparison between Torino and Glasgow image
The aim of this paper is to investigate the features of urban tourism and to analyze and define the actractive potential and the way of valorization of the tourist offer in some urban areas defined “converted cities” (Judd and Fainstein, 1999) or “cities in crisis”, that need great regeneration policies (Costa, 2008).
This paper is founded on a comparison between the cultural policies of two of the main converted cities in Europe: Torino (Italy) and Glasgow (Scotland). The paper proposes an integrated analysis of the cultural system of the two cities: the structure of supply, the characteristics of the demand,  the analysis of the resources, the evolution of planning tools and their impacts over territorial organization. Both Torino and Glasgow are actually setting cultural policies even if in a quite different way and starting in different periods. If Glasgow was the European Cultural Capital already in 1990, it is just the Olympic Winter Games of Torino 2006 that have been the starting point of Torino’s cultural policies. For both of the city the heavy industry (Glasgow Boats on the river and Torino Cars in the FIAT plants) had led the economy for more than 50 years: now they have both begun a transition process towards new territorial assets in which the cultural dimension will probably gain a much important role.
The paper is organised as it follows. A first part moves at a theoretical level, and it is based on the Pearce grid (Pearce, 2001): the grid offers a model to analyse the cultural offer of a specific city, integrating urban and tourism plans. The second part works empirically on the two case studies, and it compares  problems, difficulties and opportunities linked to the transition of Torino and Glasgow towards cultural cities.