I’m not actually sure what I just read. I think I just read the blog post of someone who got paid to tell me I don’t know the underlying issues contributing to gentrification, and while I’m no urban planner, I think I kind of do!
While not directly an infill issue, this is a driver to clearing the space to then pack “infill” onto.
I sure would like to see a city where they’re doing what this blogger says brings jobs into historically-poor neighborhoods, yet doesn’t displace long-time residents. Is that possible? Because in Portland, outside investment in historically neglected neighborhoods does bring grocery stores, but recently, those are along the lines of Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods and New Seasons, none of which are affordable relative to the area and not even for people like me. They may employe some long-time residents hanging on for dear life, but that doesn’t mean they can shop there. The blogger also complains that it’s good if a sit-down restaurant moves in where a vacant storefront was, but isn’t that ignoring that maybe the storefront is vacant because the neighborhood businesses were not supported and had to close? How about an effort to bring those businesses back, or can the blogger acknowledge that the pricing-out of people fundamentally changes neighborhoods in such a way that businesses move to less expensive areas and the die is cast? That sure has happened in Portland.
The City of Portland issued this study on the effects of gentrification and displacement. By now, this data will be out of date.
I was searching for actual data on the real impact of high density and infill development, because while income inequality and demolition angers me to no end, this is really still a blog about density…right?
So it is with much enthusiasm that I read this. I didn’t know Seattle had a displacement *coalition*. I must see if Portland does. We sure need one.
This is fresh. As of *today*. This runs counter to most things I assume to be true about inclusionary zoning, and it’s so new I’m still reading it, but it seems to like to play devil’s advocate.
Having said that, I have read that even the definition of “affordable” can be arbitrary when the topic of affordable housing comes up, and I have also seen in some documentaries and read in recent articles that the reaction to mixing social strata in close proximity is discomfort and resentment. Make of that what you will.