ABERDEEN IN THE 20th CENTURY
The old industry of granite production went into decline in the early 20th century. It ceased altogether in 1971. However new industries came along. The fate of Aberdeen was changed by the discovery of North Sea oil. After experimental drilling in 1970 the council set aside land for new oil related industries. New industrial estates were built in and around Aberdeen at that time. The first North Sea oil arrived in Aberdeen in 1975. Oil soon became the main industry in the city and it brought considerable prosperity. Another new industry was information technology, which is flourishing in Aberdeen.
Housing in Aberdeen greatly improved in the 20th century. In the 1920s and 1930s serious slum clearance took place. Between 1919 and 1939 2,955 slum houses were demolished. Some 6,555 council houses were built. The former slum dwellers were re-housed in the many council houses built in the city at that time. Many private houses were also built in Aberdeen between the wars such as those in Kings Gate and Aungusfield. The city's boundaries were extended in 1934.
In 1928 the children's hospital moved to its present site. In 1936 the Royal Infirmary moved again to its present site.
The Northern Hotel was built in 1938.
Bon Accord swimming pool was built in 1940.
During World War II Aberdeen did not suffer as much as some British cities. Nevertheless 178 people were killed by German bombing.
In the late 20th century Aberdeen continued to expand. In the 1950's and 1960s thousands of new council houses were built in estates at Mastrick, Cornhill, Northfield, Stockethill, Tillydrone and Hazelhead. Blocks of flats were built as well as houses.
Moreover the centre of the city was redeveloped in the 1960s. St Nicholas House was built in 1967.
In the late 1960s the harbour was modernised. The Fish Market was built in 1982. Telford Dock was built in 1994.
There was another outbreak of typhoid in Aberdeen in 1964 but this time there was only one death. Aberdeen was a much healthier city in the 20th century.
In the late 20th century amenities in Aberdeen continued to improve. The Trinity Centre opened in 1985. The Bon Accord shopping centre was built in 1990. Gordons College was made a university in 1992.
Furthermore Westburn Park Tennis Centre was opened in 1994. Persley Walled Garden was also opened in 1994.
Two museums opened in 1997, The Maritime Museum and Gordon Highlanders Museum.
Meanwhile local government was reformed and in 1996 and Aberdeen was made a unitary authority.
Today the population of Aberdeen is 212,000.
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