Gentrification is bad, 'mmkay. But what happens to

In this thread, gentrification was discussed.

A definition:

My question is this. All the artists and yuppies and hipster shops must come from somewhere, right? They don’t appear from thin air. And they leave empty apartments and stores behind, no? Who moves in those? Who benefits from those?

Less desirable areas/cities and other countries, perhaps.


But that is my point: it is always said that the hipster yuppies “drive out” the previous inhabitants. As if they have nowhere to go. But what I see, is a slow, slow wheel of people moving through a city. Getrification then, is taking a neighbourhood where the location is better then the houses, and bringing the housing on par with the status and convenience of the location.

I’m supposed to be against gentrification, but I’m kinda not. Especially since opposers don’t seem to count all those houses the people moving in, leave behind.

The real problem, then, seems to be to rebuild their community for the low income people moving away. but that is a problem everyone moving to a new place faces, right?

With the recent destruction of the old atmosphere of Venice Beach, and the quirky, sometimes odd, semi-bohemians being thrust out by property prices rising and an influx of the wealthy dull, that was entirely due to Snapchat moving in, and their employees becoming very rich. These* nouveau riche* came from the ordinary homes of nerds.

1 The justification for Snapchat is that they are the makers, the weavers of dreams, whose hard work and ingenuity means they are more important than the poor and the shiftless.

Snapchat provides a service whereby photos are sent to cell-phones and then eliminated after 10 seconds. Truly vital.
2 The unnerving thing about this is that the rich saddos were longing to be part of, and accounted as, Bohemia: that place always beyond the horizon where poor but vibrant artists and semi-outcasts hold wilder parties and full satisfying lives.
And by their nature, wealth, respectability, dreariness, the rich geeks not only preclude themselves from this state of being; but they also managed to eliminate it for everyone else.
3. I would enjoy neither the old nor the new Venice Beach.

Because it’s the bien pensant thing to do?
There are lots of complaints against economic phenomena which are well-intended but poorly thought out.
I’m not sure how well one can reply to what seems to be the intent of your thread while remaining in GQ.

Neither the Washington Post nor you know little about Venice Beach. It’s a very old neighborhood. The two largest groups there are upper middle class and rich homeowners and renters and homeless. Nothing has changed. The homeless tend to be young and substance abusing. Its not a safe place to be at night because our local politicians think the right to be homeless triumphs the right to be safe.

Its an utterly ridiculous story. The Post is 3000 miles from Venice.

FTR its called Venice because it was modeled after the Italian city complete with canals. Besides the homeless its a great place to live.

Often, they kind of do.

Nope. Starbucks doesn’t have a rule that they have to close down one store when they open a new one. New artists don’t have to fight cage matches to oust established artists from their studios, taking their heads and with it their gallery showings.

And many of the new residential occupants aren’t coming from other apartments, they’re coming from their parents’ houses in Nebraska, or their Midwest university digs, not another yuppie neighbourhood in the same big city.

It’s not like there’s a fixed population that circulates, new yuppies and hipsters are constantly being generated.

In London, where average house prices, rent and buy, are astronomical, the problem seems to be that as the young and (relatively) wealthy begin to move in, they push the less well off indigenous population further out and away from employment. It is also claimed that they break up ‘communities’. In a city like London, with a large and constantly shifting population, the idea of ‘community’ is more ideal than reality.

To a large extent, the people who are moving in, do not leave vacant properties behind them. They either come from their parent’s houses or from outside London.

I do not know what this sentence means.

Anyway, I wrote about Venice Beach long ago.

Not really. The church near me was rebuilt in the 14th century.

Who cares ? Homeless have to live somewhere. Gentrification may make things safer, as in City of the Dead safer, but it doesn’t make things prettier.

It’s like reading any of the bullshit the New York Times writes about Detroit.

I’m pretty much fed up with the whining about “gentrification.” If people want to live in a place, it’s going to cost more to move there. If you own a home in said place, no you’re not going to be “pushed out” because your property taxes only change significantly if your home is re-assessed. I’ve never heard any realistic solution from the “gentrification” whiners on how they would keep decayed neighborhoods cheap to live in but desirable to move to. as far as I can tell, they’re just upset that white people have the nerve to move (back) in.

Gentrification can be a continuing process rather than a single change. There’s a semi-famous cartoon about this. Something like the four steps shown in this cartoon have happened in some cities. As has been discussed before on the SDMB, about five years ago the number of people moving into cities from the suburbs has passed the number of people moving into the suburbs from the cities. Note: This is the overall trend in the U.S., so while it applies to most American cities, it isn’t true just yet in some cities. I don’t know what the trends are outside the U.S. Here’s the cartoon:

Their parents go on living in the apartments. The shops didn’t exist; there might have been a studio or work-live space in some crummy old condemned building or anonymous business park that the next generation of startup/hipsters/artists move into.

There are two things producing “new” yuppies.

One is increasing wealth stratification, especially in cities. Put simplistically, not long ago, if we had 100 people, 10 would be poor, 10 would be rich, and 80 would be middle class. But as wealth gets more concentrated, we start seeing 30 poor, 20 rich, and 50 middle class. So we have both more poor people and more rich people, all pressing for the same space.

Another is general migration to cities. They are coming from suburbs. They are coming from all those empty rust belt small towns. They are coming from smaller, declining cities. Anyone who thinks they can make it is heading to where the wealth is.

It’s a tricky thing, but gentrification doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing deal. We are capable of planning cities that offer a healthy mix of housing. And we are capable of reshaping the suburbs that the poor are moving to to be less unworkable for the poor-- adding things like public transit, decent schools, access to community services, etc.

Gentrification results when a neighborhood has become so cheap, that new people move in. Is renovation of old, run-down housing a bad thing? Critics should focus on why areas decay in the first place…and a big reason is the inhabitants. Face it-who wants to live in a place where you can be killed by a “stray bullet”? Get rid of crime and any place is better.

study cause and effect. poverty begets crime, not vice versa.

There is a racist overtone to this:

When white people leave an area and take their money and influence its called “white flight” - which is bad.

When white people move into an area and bring their money and influence it’s called “gentrification” - which is bad.

Why cant social engineers just allow people to move and live where they want and avoid the racial terms?

I can assure you that gentrification is also a problem in plenty of places that aren’t the USA. It may be about race in your city; it isn’t in mine.

Exactly, and I’d argue that the very nature of hipsters and yuppies means that they’re being spawned out from middle and upper class neighborhoods.

Essentially some kid grows up in a middle class neighborhood, goes to college, gets a decent job, lives a few years afterward in an apartment with a roommate, and then BOOM… buys a house in a gentrifying neighborhood.

His parents still live in the same old house in the 'burbs that they always did- there’s just 2 people living there now instead of 3 (or more, if they had multiple kids).

And Urbanredneck has a point; there is a certain… disdain for whatever white middle and upper class people do- like he says, if they leave an area, it’s “white flight” and “contributing to urban sprawl” and all the other criticisms of suburban life, and if they move into the city, it’s “gentrification” which is just as evil. Yet if poor inner city people move anywhere else, nobody’s supposed to complain, and it’s always a positive thing?

Ultimately you have to have this motion across neighborhoods- it’s like a sort of social convection. Without it, you end up with very defined segregated neighborhoods. You already have it to some extent in most cities, but at least the motion back and forth tends to mitigate it somewhat.

Just to complicate the equation… not making an across-the-board generalization… where I live, when one single-family home is knocked down, they build 8 condos.

It’s a very complex phenomenon. One aspect that interests me is the influence of public transport.

White-flight and suburban sprawl were largely enabled (and driven) by car culture. It is very difficult to live in most suburbs without at least one, and typically two cars per household. You need more land to park or garage those cars, so you need cheaper land farther from city centers, and moving out there reinforces the need for a car. Cul-de-sac neighborhoods are built to accommodate the downside (through traffic) of cars, making neighborhoods un-walkable and unfriendly to bicycles.

One reason that the poor stayed in the inner city was that they couldn’t afford the cars needed to live in a suburb. Though the service was often poor, most cities at least have bus service in the core, and there might be jobs you could walk to. You could also rent a one bedroom apartment, while suburbs require you to buy a three bedroom starter home at a minimum.

In the last couple of decades, being a car-less urbanite has become trendy. People who can afford to live in suburbs gentrify old neighborhoods, and the lack of car payments, insurance, gas and maintenance expense for a car means they have even more available income to compete in the housing market.

And that leads to one real problem I see: The displaced poor really can’t afford to live in areas where owning a car is a necessity, so even if the hipsters and techies are leaving holes in outlying areas, the poor can’t live there because they can’t afford a reliable car to to get to their low wage job every day.