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"With reference to one or more case studies consider the impact oftourism in the last 30 years on urban areas in the MEDW."

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Introduction

"With reference to one or more case studies consider the impact of tourism in the last 30 years on urban areas in the MEDW." Tourism is essentially the industry of making money from travelling people, and a very new industry at that, having expanded hugely since the 1960s. In 2000 there were approximately 600 million tourists world-wide, over 10% of the total world population. It is one of the largest, (if not the largest) global industries, being the EU`s largest employer. Tourists originate mostly from the MEDW, (more economically developed world) and visit tourist locations in both the LEDW, (less economically developed world) and MEDW, generating employment in both these areas, to staff the demand for new services. The MEDW had experienced an explosion in demand for recreation and tourism and it is highly probable that this is connected to the massive increase in disposable income and wealth that the MEDW enjoys. It is also because of the recent trend in paid holidays, where employees can take a few weeks a year to go on holiday and still receive their money as if they had worked those months. This means that those particularly concerned with finance would not find going on holiday too costly if they had to take time off work, and that overall, they have more leisure time available to them. ...read more.

Middle

Urban tourism also brings a massive increase in revenue. At the Dome this was expected to be �500 million, and although this was not met, it gives an idea of the money which tourism brings in to an urban area. The London Eye, has made over �20 million since its establishment earlier this year. With greater tourist activity, the local councils receive more money which they can recirculate to directly benefit the local people in local improvements. Also, in making these local improvements they benefit the tourist industry attracting even more visitors. With the aim of improving the aesthetics of the local area so that the traditional perceptions of London, (smelly, dirty, awash with graffiti.) are not those taken back when tourists return, landscaping and the addition of new parkland, and greenery is used to this end. Also, widescale combating of graffiti is something undertaken in many cities, including New York, where there are heavy fines in place for daubing walls in such bright colours. London has always had a problem with litter, especially since the IRA bomb attacks of the 1980s and more recently the fears of Muslim fundamentalist bombings in the primary cities of the Western world. This is because dustbins provide ideal sites to place explosive devices without being detected. Thus, litter levels have risen. With new policies, including on-the-spot fines for litter dropping, announced by Tony Blair in the past few days, this problem can in some way be targeted. ...read more.

Conclusion

There is then a level of antagonism, when overt displays of irritation become evident. The locals no longer cherish the presence of tourists, and see them as the bringer of all the ills of their local community. For example, "Taxes are on the up because of tourists," and, "They have no respect for our property or our city." Although not linked to tourism there was a great level of antagonism when refugees came to seek asylum in Britain, during the Kosovo conflict in the 90s, because of the large influx of new people with different culture, and different language. To some extent I believe this is true with tourists also. Environmentally, large scale tourism development can help, as I have already discussed, with new greenery being put in place to improve the aesthetics. However, the built environment can be degraded through over-use, or over congestion, and when it's past looking its best, perception of the area could decrease. More tourists does not overly increase pollution levels because many will use the usual public transport services, and only relatively few hire cars. In conclusion, with all impacts taken into account, I believe positive economic impacts outweigh all the other concerns. As long as the social and environmental issues are not totally ignored, a boost to the economy is always beneficial, and with the money from it, social and environmental issues can be addressed, with the finances to attend to them successfully. ...read more.

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