August 25, 2012
By Ian Youngs | BBC News
Over the past decade, bold and costly new art galleries have sprung up in towns from Margate to Middlesbrough in the hope of regenerating underloved areas and bringing modern art to the masses. Has the strategy worked?
Ten years ago on Friday, an old flour mill on the banks of the River Tyne was reborn as a temple to modern art when Gateshead's Baltic gallery opened its doors.
The £46m Baltic and its neighbour the Sage, a futuristic Norman Foster-designed concert hall, have become city landmarks.
But as well as cultural venues, they are monuments to the metamorphoses cities like Newcastle and Gateshead have gone through since the steam and soot of heavy industry subsided.
The Baltic and Sage demonstrate how "cultural investment" can regenerate an area, according to Baltic director Godfrey Worsdale, who points to new hotels, a design centre and college that have sprung up in their shadows. Read More...