The army as a member of an urban development coalition ? Institutionalization and conflicts in urban governance
Working papers du Programme Villes & territoires
Paris : Sciences Po - Institut d'études politiques de Paris
Working papers du Programme Villes & territoires : 2010-11
Urban space can be seen as a rare resource and is therefore likely to become the object of conflicting interests. This paper analyzes the relations between the army and the local government in Toulon, and their negotiations about the use and control of urban land. A contradiction between the inclusion of the army in a coalition for local development and diverging priorities about urban spaces is pointed out. Different strategies are developed by local authorities, aimed at institutionalizing the relations with the army. Indeed, the latter is considered as an actor controlling strategic resources for Toulon’s development. The strategies are based upon a new framing of the military presence in the city, the establishment of regular and ritualized meetings, and the use of middle-men. However, the existence of a main cleavage concerning the use and control of city land makes the army an urban veto player, rather than a member of an urban coalition for local development. As a consequence, newly created institutions fail.