What happens when you take a traditionally working class area with cheap housing, flood it with venture capital money in the form of high end housing, and market the hell out of it to aspiring home owners? If you guessed “rapidly rising property prices” and “pricing locals out of the area” you’d be exactly right!
For anyone living in a major American capital, this is not an intellectual problem – it is an everyday problem that comes in the form of rapidly rising rent, deteriorating communities and an ever widening gap between the rich and the poor. Amazingly, a serious study was needed to prove this in New York, and a lucky group of NYCHA (New York City Housing Authority) residents took part in a $250,000 report where the effects of gentrification were examined on NYCHA residents. From NY Daily News:
The city hired five NYCHA residents to work as urban “interpreters” who gathered information for a $250,000 report that reached a conclusion most New Yorkers already accept as true: gentrification doesn’t help the poor.
The study, “The Effects of Neighborhood Change on NYCHA Residents,” written by the consulting firm Abt Associates with help from New York University’s Furman Center for Real Estate, found that NYCHA tenants often wind up feeling like aliens in their own neighborhoods, surrounded by newcomers who claimed they’d just “discovered” the neighborhood.
“NYCHA residents could be priced out of new private amenities and new, higher-income neighbors may not contribute to accessible community resources,” the report reads.
Next, the city will be commissioning a $500,000 study as to whether shooting unarmed black men exacerbates race relations in the New York area…
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.