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  #151  
Old 01-09-2018, 08:13 PM
Stranger On A Train Stranger On A Train is online now
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Originally Posted by The Plutonium Kid View Post
Because the long time residents may not be able to find affordable housing elsewhere. Also, when you've really put down roots in a place, having to leave can be something of a trauma.
I genuinely hate to say this, but it isn’t the concern of a landlord whether tenants having to move because they can no longer afford rent is a tragedy. The real problem here is income inequality and the challenges (which are only going to increase) in vocational opportunities, which is a larger problem that results in destructive gentrification. It is going to become an even larger problem with an aging population entering retirement with less savings and an increasingly fragile social net combined with fewer family connections. Invoking some kind of generic disparagement about ‘gentrification’ is not particularly helpful, unless the idea is that we should send all of the elderly people without large retirement savings to ‘Bakersfield’, which I’m increasingly convinced is just a euphamism by the o.p. for sending people out in the corn field in the vein of It’s a Good Life.

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Originally Posted by The Plutonium Kid View Post
A return on an investment isn't necessarily measured in money. Just not adding dozens or hundreds of new homeless families to the existing population of them could reasonably be considered a good return.
Return on investment is a financial term that specifically refers to the measurement of profit in proportion to investment. You are discussing a different issue which for lack of a better term might be called socioeconomic homeostatis; the ability of people in a neighborhood to keep up with economic and social changes. This is, again, a larger societal problem than just hipsters and yuppies moving into Brooklyn and converting old apartment bulidings into expensive lofts or building waterfront condos.

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  #152  
Old 01-11-2018, 10:06 PM
Mosier Mosier is offline
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I argued briefly above that it's a negative because it lays the stress and trauma of forced relocation on people who are in the worst position to be able to handle forced relocation. What are your thoughts about that?
Sorry to reply so late, but I don't necessarily agree that the stress and trauma gentrification puts on poor people outweighs the benefits of a bigger local economy, rising wages, lower crime, and other ancillary benefits like more access to healthy food options, public transportation access, and better schools (among lots of other benefits too numerous to list).

I would argue that gentrification gives poor people more opportunity, not less. The solution to poverty isn't to give people money, because that money just ends up in the hands of people who increase rents to compensate for their tenants extra government money. The solution to poverty is to add more services, like housing which is owned by the government instead of slum lords who are subsidized by the government. You can't gentrify a government-owned apartment building!

Last edited by Mosier; 01-11-2018 at 10:07 PM.
  #153  
Old 01-12-2018, 06:58 AM
marshmallow marshmallow is offline
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Originally Posted by Nadnerb View Post
You fail to realize that gentrification is a classist and racist activity.
The police act as the militarized arm of real estate developers, and liberals turn into Murray Rothbard the second you question their civilizing mission:
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Take Back the Streets: Get Rid of the Bums. Again: unleash the cops to clear the streets of bums and vagrants. Where will they go? Who cares? Hopefully, they will disappear, that is, move from the ranks of the petted and cosseted bum class to the ranks of the productive members of society.
It's one of their weaker efforts if you ask me, but you might be interested in this Citations Needed episode about the casual use of settler-colonial rhetoric in real estate advertisements and the liberal press. My favorites include "urban pioneers," "Chicago safari," and cafe and restaurants with cutesy colonial names like The Hinterlands or The Outpost. Even in this thread you see the same logic that European settlers used -- these savages weren't cultivating the land properly, but then we came in and made it productive and safe.

The idea that Ross Perot would fix any of these problems is pretty unlikely. Capitalism isn't equipped to deal with situations like this. Maybe a social democracy with confiscatory wealth redistribution could help, but don't count on that happening in America any time soon.
  #154  
Old 01-12-2018, 07:24 AM
msmith537 msmith537 is offline
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Originally Posted by Mosier View Post
Sorry to reply so late, but I don't necessarily agree that the stress and trauma gentrification puts on poor people outweighs the benefits of a bigger local economy, rising wages, lower crime, and other ancillary benefits like more access to healthy food options, public transportation access, and better schools (among lots of other benefits too numerous to list).

I would argue that gentrification gives poor people more opportunity, not less. The solution to poverty isn't to give people money, because that money just ends up in the hands of people who increase rents to compensate for their tenants extra government money. The solution to poverty is to add more services, like housing which is owned by the government instead of slum lords who are subsidized by the government. You can't gentrify a government-owned apartment building!

Having seen gentrification is places like New York, Hoboken/Jersey City and Boston, I would tend to agree. Yes, some people get priced out of their decrepit homes, which are often bulldozed and replaced with Yuppie Ghettos on the Hudson. But what you do get are run down, often dangerous buildings being replaced by larger, nicer ones with greater capacity. The shops, bar, restaurants and services that move in provide jobs and actually make the neighborhood a place that people want to live in.

And, quite frankly, it's something that has to happen. You can't freeze neighborhoods in some arbitrary year and just keep building new ones on the periphery. You'll just end up with something like Detroit.
  #155  
Old 01-12-2018, 07:40 AM
Nava Nava is offline
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Originally Posted by Mosier View Post
Sorry to reply so late, but I don't necessarily agree that the stress and trauma gentrification puts on poor people outweighs the benefits of a bigger local economy, rising wages, lower crime, and other ancillary benefits like more access to healthy food options, public transportation access, and better schools (among lots of other benefits too numerous to list).
Barceloneta for the 1992 Olympics: people got expropiated out, sometimes given other housing in exchange but of course the new housing was in other areas of town, away from the friends and neighbors they'd known their whole lives. The Olympic Village was, unlike most of Barcelona, not designed as mixed-uses; it is seen as "a comercial desert" and scary to walk around at night.
Bad for the old neighbors and not particularly desirable for new ones.

Other areas in the Barcelona metro area get gentrified slowly; part of it is new buildings replacing old ones, part is old ones getting revamped. These revamps take place both flat by flat, and eventually the common areas; usually the common areas get done after several neighbors have already fixed their flats and they want things such as, oh, common electrical connections which can support their updated electrical without danger. Some of the prettier old buildings are acquired by the cities or by nonprofits and revamped for public use. There's a renewal but it's organic. The new buildings are restricted to the height of their neighbors: the new houses look new but don't scream at you, and like the old buildings have stores or small businesses on the ground floor. Part of this comes from lessons learned: many developers have figured out that a place doesn't just have to look attractive at noon but at midnight.

The same word, the same place, two completely different situations.
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Last edited by Nava; 01-12-2018 at 07:45 AM.
  #156  
Old 01-12-2018, 09:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Mosier View Post
You can't gentrify a government-owned apartment building!
Oh, no?
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Originally Posted by wiki
At its peak, Cabrini–Green was home to 15,000 people, living in mid- and high-rise apartment buildings totaling 3,607 units. Over the years, crime, gang violence and neglect created deplorable living conditions for the residents, and "Cabrini–Green" became synonymous with the problems associated with public housing in the United States. The last of the buildings in Cabrini–Green were demolished in March 2011.
...
Over time, Cabrini–Green's location became increasingly desirable to private developers. Speculators began purchasing property immediately adjacent to the projects, with the expectation that the complex would eventually be demolished. Finally, in May 1995, the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) took over management of the CHA and almost immediately began demolishing the first of the vacant "reds" buildings in Cabrini Extension, intending to make Chicago a showpiece of a new, mixed-income approach to public housing.
Sounds like gentrification to me.
  #157  
Old 01-13-2018, 02:21 AM
anomalous1 anomalous1 is offline
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Originally Posted by DesertDog View Post
Oh, no?Sounds like gentrification to me.

I lived within 2 miles of this place when I was younger (now live about 3 miles from it as an adult), and went to high school down the street ( 5 blocks). That entire area was a shithole (yep, i've said it). When I was in high school there were 2 Cabrini buildings left, they used my [public] high school as a magnet for it and it was terrible, metal detectors never on, many people brought in weapons, gang violence (especially when it was warm) and not to mention lots and lots of drugs. Once they tore that abomination down, the crime in the neighborhood lifted, it looked nicer, the high school cleaned up and there are many many new stores and buildings, not to mention the biggest aspect. A neighborhood nobody would go near if they had a choice, now became SAFE! First hand look at the positive impact of gentrification.

Gentrification works out for the greater good.

Last edited by anomalous1; 01-13-2018 at 02:23 AM.
  #158  
Old 01-13-2018, 07:45 AM
msmith537 msmith537 is offline
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Originally Posted by Nava View Post

The same word, the same place, two completely different situations.
I don't know if I would call the Barceloneta Olympics example "gentrification". To me, gentrification has an organic quality where the neighborhood gradually improves with an influx of high income residents and accompanying services and stores.

The Olympic Village sounds more like use of eminent domain to make bad, short-sighted land use decisions.

Not that the two can't go hand in hand. One form of gentrification I'm not crazy about is plopping a giant glass skyscraper in the middle of an otherwise dumpy neighborhood. They always make me think of the novel High Rise by J.G. Ballard.

Check out the contemporary luxury of the Cast Iron Lofts in the prestigious "SoHo West" neighborhood of Jersey City:
https://www.castironlofts.com/

Well, the reason for the selectively cropped pictures is that "SoHo West" would appear to consist of mostly vacant lots and old industrial buildings, conveniently located between where Rt 78 feeds into the Holland Tunnel and the Hoboken NJ Transit rail yards.
https://tinyurl.com/y7nzx45e

That's not really gentrification though, as there was nothing there before. A better example would be Pavonia Newport in Jersey City to the East. It has a very corporate feel. Mostly a big mall, some office towers (mostly back-office operations for investment banks) and a bunch of luxury high rise buildings where the residents come home after work and shut their doors.

Last edited by msmith537; 01-13-2018 at 07:47 AM.
  #159  
Old 01-13-2018, 08:52 AM
Nava Nava is offline
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Originally Posted by msmith537 View Post
I don't know if I would call the Barceloneta Olympics example "gentrification". To me, gentrification has an organic quality where the neighborhood gradually improves with an influx of high income residents and accompanying services and stores.
That would disqualify my second example as well then, since there is no influx of "accompanying services and stores" where the reason for the new stores is a higher average income. The stores change, but they've changed more to reflect a more-diverse ethnic background than a higher income; higher-range stores are becoming more and more concentrated downtown and in malls (the highest range ones are downtown).
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  #160  
Old 01-13-2018, 10:28 AM
Ann Hedonia Ann Hedonia is online now
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Originally Posted by anomalous1 View Post
Typical scenarios

Gentrification doesn't happen - > people ask for money because the city neglects them because of some widespread conspiracy of racism

Gentrification does happen - > people ask for money to stay in their homes because the city is neglecting their community due to racism

Mixed Housing Happens - > people say its destroying their community and it is racism trying to squeeze them out slowly or not helping enough

Mixed Housing doesn't happen - > people say that their city is not giving them a chance and won't help them, also due to racism
.
I’ve noticed that mixed housing causes a whole set of other issues. The developer of a luxury condo will be required to - or agree to in exchange for other concessions - to include some affordable rental units in his luxury condo.
Then the freakout starts because the residents of the affordable units don’t have access to the luxury amenities like the spacious lobby with concierge services, the gym and swimming pool. All which the luxury residents pay a lot of money towards. And those affordable apartments are smaller than the luxury units and lack the expensive finishes. It becomes a scandal and everyone starts screaming discrimination because the developer isnt subsidizing a luxury lifestyle for his affordable unit tenants.

It’s counter-productive.

Years ago, when I was poor - this was in the early 1980s — I was right out of college and living in NYC on minimum wage. And I was living in a horrid roach infested tenement building that happened to be located in what had lately become desirable area. And it was a horrid railroad flat apartment, i was one of the lucky residents that had my own bathroom actually in my apartment.

And my landlord offered to buy out my rent controlled lease. I saw this as an opportunity to jump-start a better life for myself. But I was young and I thought I might need some help navigating in buy-out. So I went to a place that offered housing assistance to low-income people.

But all they were interested in doing was helping me dig in and fight my landlord tooth and nail for my right to continue to live in squalor ( a “right” I already had, NYC rent control was super-strict back in the day). When I told them I actually wanted to take the buy out and move, it was like I’d walked into Catholic Charities and asked for help with an abortion. So I did it myself. And I never regretted it.

And I want to add that I know people that have hung onto their rent controlled apartments for years. And none of them are remotely poor and most of them have used to money they save on market rent to do things like buy second homes. I see why they do it, they’re legally allowed, but it’s kind of disgraceful.

Last edited by Ann Hedonia; 01-13-2018 at 10:31 AM.
  #161  
Old 01-13-2018, 11:48 AM
doreen doreen is online now
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Originally Posted by Ann Hedonia View Post
I’ve noticed that mixed housing causes a whole set of other issues. The developer of a luxury condo will be required to - or agree to in exchange for other concessions - to include some affordable rental units in his luxury condo.
Then the freakout starts because the residents of the affordable units don’t have access to the luxury amenities like the spacious lobby with concierge services, the gym and swimming pool. All which the luxury residents pay a lot of money towards. And those affordable apartments are smaller than the luxury units and lack the expensive finishes. It becomes a scandal and everyone starts screaming discrimination because the developer isnt subsidizing a luxury lifestyle for his affordable unit tenants.
You know what's interesting about that? I've never seen one of the people living in one of the affordable apartments complain about not having access to the amenities or having to use the "poor door". It's always other people getting offended on their behalf- the actual residents tend to take the attitude that they don't care about which door they use or that market rate tenants have access to more amenities because this is the best place they've ever lived.
  #162  
Old 01-13-2018, 12:16 PM
Ann Hedonia Ann Hedonia is online now
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You know what's interesting about that? I've never seen one of the people living in one of the affordable apartments complain about not having access to the amenities or having to use the "poor door". It's always other people getting offended on their behalf- the actual residents tend to take the attitude that they don't care about which door they use or that market rate tenants have access to more amenities because this is the best place they've ever lived.
Agreed. And it’s a shame, because that mixed use housing is one of the best, if not a perfect, solution to the displacement problem. Buts it’s going to be so fraught with bad publicity for the “evil” real estate developers that they hesitate to do it.

Last edited by Ann Hedonia; 01-13-2018 at 12:16 PM.
  #163  
Old 01-13-2018, 12:22 PM
Nava Nava is offline
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Originally Posted by Ann Hedonia View Post
I’ve noticed that mixed housing causes a whole set of other issues. The developer of a luxury condo will be required to - or agree to in exchange for other concessions - to include some affordable rental units in his luxury condo.
The whole Eixample of Barcelona was developed as what you're calling "mixed housing", although not even the most luxurious apartment buildings in Spain are expected to have a private gym. Nowadays you can have mixed housing by having buildings including flats of different sizes and/or with large terraces (which carry a premium); the top flats may even be duplexes. Also, we don't even have the condo situation (I find myself explaining it any time the news say something about some actor not being allowed to "buy" an apartment in NYC): sometimes a building's HOA owns an apartment and rents it out (usually, it used to be the concierge's), but in general either you own or you rent. No condos, and the HOA can't veto anybody.

The Eixample was revolutionary in many ways: it was developed with large streets way before cars became commonplace, the cut-off corners provide good visibility, it included many green areas (the original design had ever block being a double block with a park in between), all flats are airy and easy to ventilate... but the fact that the same building could have the owners living in the first floor (high ceilings, a flat which occupied the whole floor) and renters of different socioeconomic status in each floor (the ceilings got lower and so did the rents) was in many ways even more of a revolution. What I've described is the situation when my grandparents got the flat where I always knew them, in 1938; they bought it from the original owner's heirs using a rent-to-pay scheme that's very favorable to both parts in 1963.
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Last edited by Nava; 01-13-2018 at 12:27 PM.
  #164  
Old 01-13-2018, 12:42 PM
Eva Luna Eva Luna is online now
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Also, we don't even have the condo situation (I find myself explaining it any time the news say something about some actor not being allowed to "buy" an apartment in NYC): sometimes a building's HOA owns an apartment and rents it out (usually, it used to be the concierge's), but in general either you own or you rent. No condos, and the HOA can't veto anybody.
What you're talking about is a co-op, not a condo. In a co-op, the board can veto potential buyers. Co-ops are much more common in the NYC area, not so much in other places. In a condo, the board normally does not have the right to refuse buyers. Condos are more common in most of the country. Where I live, for example, there are practically no co-ops and it's almost impossible to get mortgages for them (and even when you can find a mortgage, down payments are normally much higher). The legal structure of a co-op is that when you purchase a unit, you are purchasing shares in the company that owns the building. In most of the U.S., when there is discussion of buying a condo, it's what you're thinking of as the default for buying an apartment.
  #165  
Old 01-13-2018, 12:46 PM
Nava Nava is offline
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Except that in Spain it is not possible to have some of the common areas be available to some owners and not others. It's common area, it's co-owned. No "these people get the nice door, these don't"; no "these have access to the pool, these don't". If there is a pool it's for everybody; in fact, it is owned by everybody. So it may be similar but it's not the same.
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Last edited by Nava; 01-13-2018 at 12:47 PM.
  #166  
Old 01-13-2018, 12:57 PM
doreen doreen is online now
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The whole Eixample of Barcelona was developed as what you're calling "mixed housing", although not even the most luxurious apartment buildings in Spain are expected to have a private gym. Nowadays you can have mixed housing by having buildings including flats of different sizes and/or with large terraces (which carry a premium); the top flats may even be duplexes. Also, we don't even have the condo situation (I find myself explaining it any time the news say something about some actor not being allowed to "buy" an apartment in NYC): sometimes a building's HOA owns an apartment and rents it out (usually, it used to be the concierge's), but in general either you own or you rent. No condos, and the HOA can't veto anybody.

I believe Ann Hedonia is using mixed housing to describe something differnt that you are. She's using it to describe not a mix of different types of apartments ( with or without a balcony or terrace, or apartments of different sizes) but a building where in exchange for tax breaks or zoning variances a developer has set aside a certain percentage of apartments to be "affordable" while the others are market rate. For example in this building the rent for affordable studio apartments will range from $519 to $1967 - and the market rate apartments will be even higher. Those studios will be the same size and the $1967 a month affordable units will be no different from the $519 a month affordable units - the difference in rent is based on the tenant's income.


These are usually rental buildings, not condos or coops, so it's not a matter of some owners not having access to certain amenities, it's a matter of certain tenants not having access included in their rent ( they can sometimes pay an additional fee)

Last edited by doreen; 01-13-2018 at 01:01 PM.
  #167  
Old 01-13-2018, 01:53 PM
Nava Nava is offline
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Right, that's what I'm saying. That what Ann Hedonia is describing wouldn't even be possible in Spain. Or, from what I know, in many other Western European countries (if it's possible in any).
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  #168  
Old 01-13-2018, 02:59 PM
Ann Hedonia Ann Hedonia is online now
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Originally Posted by doreen View Post
I believe Ann Hedonia is using mixed housing to describe something differnt that you are. She's using it to describe not a mix of different types of apartments ( with or without a balcony or terrace, or apartments of different sizes) but a building where in exchange for tax breaks or zoning variances a developer has set aside a certain percentage of apartments to be "affordable" while the others are market rate. For example in this building the rent for affordable studio apartments will range from $519 to $1967 - and the market rate apartments will be even higher. Those studios will be the same size and the $1967 a month affordable units will be no different from the $519 a month affordable units - the difference in rent is based on the tenant's income.


These are usually rental buildings, not condos or coops, so it's not a matter of some owners not having access to certain amenities, it's a matter of certain tenants not having access included in their rent ( they can sometimes pay an additional fee)
Here is an example of what I’m describing.

https://www.brickunderground.com/blo..._door_building

Affordable rentals in a luxury condo building. If you rent an apartment in the affordable section, you get amenities in line with a mid-priced rental building, including a laundry room and a community room. And the affordable housing has a separate entrance on the cross street. And the rent is considerably lower than other mid-priced rentals in the very expensive neighborhood.

The condos start at 3.6 million and the owners of those condos have access to a host of amenities. And I’m sure, in addition to buying the apartments , they pay for those amenities with common charges that are more than the rent charged for the affordable units.

Yet, somehow the renters in the affordable section are supposed to feel insulted that they can’t use the pool, gym and rock climbing wall. Like Doreen said, most of the actual renters are actually elated to get such a good deal on the apartment. Yet, the first line of this article is “Whats more important, your dignity or cheap rent?”

FYI, while NYC apartments for purchase have traditionally been co-ops, most of the new buildings are condos. They are more desirable because they are less restrictive and generally cost about 30% more. So developers prefer the condo model. The co-ops are traditionally converted rental buildings.

Last edited by Ann Hedonia; 01-13-2018 at 03:01 PM.
  #169  
Old 01-13-2018, 05:22 PM
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Thanks for sharing that Ann Hedonia, that is a very fresh perspective on this subject.
  #170  
Old 01-18-2018, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Ann Hedonia View Post
Here is an example of what I’m describing.

https://www.brickunderground.com/blo..._door_building

Affordable rentals in a luxury condo building. If you rent an apartment in the affordable section, you get amenities in line with a mid-priced rental building, including a laundry room and a community room. And the affordable housing has a separate entrance on the cross street. And the rent is considerably lower than other mid-priced rentals in the very expensive neighborhood.

The condos start at 3.6 million and the owners of those condos have access to a host of amenities. And I’m sure, in addition to buying the apartments , they pay for those amenities with common charges that are more than the rent charged for the affordable units.

Yet, somehow the renters in the affordable section are supposed to feel insulted that they can’t use the pool, gym and rock climbing wall. Like Doreen said, most of the actual renters are actually elated to get such a good deal on the apartment. Yet, the first line of this article is “Whats more important, your dignity or cheap rent?”

FYI, while NYC apartments for purchase have traditionally been co-ops, most of the new buildings are condos. They are more desirable because they are less restrictive and generally cost about 30% more. So developers prefer the condo model. The co-ops are traditionally converted rental buildings.


Yes. But...

Part of the point of affordable housing quotas is social engineering. The idea is that rubbing shoulders with the people who buy $4M condos might just provide opportunities that the renters would not otherwise have. And vice versa, provide rich condo owners with perspectives they might not otherwise see. If they’re kept separate, you loose that whole benefit. At that point, why not let the developers put the affordable apartments in another neighborhood altogether? Also, I don’t think it’s fair to handwave away the psychological impact of creating an Upstairs/Downstairs dynamic.

Thinking back to your earlier post about rent control, I believe that NYC’s strict rent control was a significant factor in how the City came through the ‘70s and ‘80s without completely hollowing out like Detroit. Yes, many people who didn’t strictly speaking require low rents received them. But they were the exact middle class people who were fleeing other metro centers. Rent control kept them where they were through the worst years and many of them fought to bring their neighborhoods back. Overall, I think as a policy rent control tends to moderate the pace of change in the real estate market and leans against both gentrification and de-gentrification (white flight).


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  #171  
Old 01-18-2018, 11:58 AM
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Typical scenarios

Gentrification doesn't happen - > people ask for money because the city neglects them because of some widespread conspiracy of racism

Gentrification does happen - > people ask for money to stay in their homes because the city is neglecting their community due to racism

Mixed Housing Happens - > people say its destroying their community and it is racism trying to squeeze them out slowly or not helping enough

Mixed Housing doesn't happen - > people say that their city is not giving them a chance and won't help them, also due to racism
It’s almost as if there’s some other underlying problem in American society of which much of the challenge of gentrification is really just a symptom.

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