As described on this chapter, the emerging territorial re-organization of Campinas metropolitan area in closely linked to state-financed investments in regional infrastructure (highways, telecommunication networks, among others) and supply-side strategies for industrial development (such as research centers and education facilities). These investments have enabled in different moments the consolidation of new business environment in advanced manufacturing and high added-value goods production, connecting the region into regional and international logistical corridors
At same time, the flexibilization and liberalization of spatial policies have prevailed over the implementation of broader strategies towards territorial cohesion and sustainable urban models. As presented along the text, despite the emphasis put by the 1988 constitution on a renewed and democratic urban agenda based on the recognition of local actors and participatory local master plans, the decentralization of responsibilities to local governments has not lead necessarily to reduction of local disparities.
On the one hand, the lack of clear definitions regarding responsibilities among the municipalities has generated institutional gaps undermining the consolidation of these territories as an effective planning instrument with politic, social and institutional legitimacy. Also, financial constraints had downgraded the local governments to perform a role in the reduction of local disparities.
On the another hand, the productive and territorial restructuring processes gave rise to a downscaled and competitive state spatial regime in the metropolitan area, as seen by the several (and disconnected) regulatory changes and tax cuts carried out by the municipalities to capture part of the investments in logistics and advanced manufacturing (Klink et al. 2013).
The increasing role of state in facilitating private capital investments in Campinas and, simultaneously, shaping the metropolitan spaces can be better seen on the privatization program of the major highways and the Viracopos airport. These initiatives carried out at state and federal levels have boosted a series of fragmented investments situated in strategically designated locations, revealing obscure power relations between different politic levels and economic actors.
Nevertheless, there are some signs that suggest the direct economic development associated to the increasing role of Viracopos on the metropolitan area is dispersed somewhere other than its vicinity. The dispersion of investments in logistics and new jobs in the metropolitan have benefited economic actors and parochial politic agendas rather than the adjacent population to the airport.
There are two elements of this claim. First, the political fragmentation among three different political levels have often generated conflicts among these spheres, undermining regulatory approaches, inter-municipal cooperation and metropolitan developmental agencies (Cappa et al. 2014; Davanzo and Negreiros 2006). More particularly, Viracopos emergence highlights the difficult relations between political forces and local actors.
As commented by Davanzo and Negreiros (2006: 273), despite the economic potentialities involving the region as whole, this projects have been “…restricted, at least so far, to negotiation between Campinas and the federal government, that is, being conducted in a field of local interest only”.
Second, the constant political attempts to redefine the urban borders towards the (cheap) rural land has boosted its conversion rates along the main economic vectors, as well as a speculative real estate market based on low-density form of urban land conversion associated with environmental degradation, increased commuting times and virtual absence of public services in the peripheral areas. This process has fostered emerging spatial differentiations not only between wealthy areas and informal settlements, but also between the consolidated areas on the North side, and new urbanization vectors on south and southwest areas.