The Guardian:
“Gentrification doesn’t trickle down to help everyone
Regeneration boosters praise cities that ‘bounce back’ from poverty. The reality is poverty just gets bounced elsewhere
David Madden. 10 Oct 2013
It’s no secret that today’s big cities are massively unequal, and gentrification is now the predominant form of neighborhood development. In countless urban districts across the world, affordable housing is on the decline and displacement is on the rise. This is especially true in New York and London, where observers are straining to find sufficient prefixes (mega, hyper and super have all been aptly applied) to describe the pace at which gentrification is changing the city.But most of the discussion about gentrification doesn’t do justice to everything at stake.Here’s how gentrification talk typically goes: poor neighborhoods are said to need “regeneration" or "revitalization", as if lifelessness and torpor – as opposed to impoverishment and disempowerment – were the problem. Exclusion is rebranded as creative "renewal". The liberal mission to "increase diversity" is perversely used as an excuse to turn residents out of their homes in places like Harlem or Brixton – areas famous for their long histories of independent political and cultural scenes.After gentrification takes hold, neighborhoods are commended for having “bounced back” from poverty, ignoring the fact that poverty has usually only been bounced elsewhere.”
Photo: Bill Cooper

The Guardian:

Gentrification doesn’t trickle down to help everyone

Regeneration boosters praise cities that ‘bounce back’ from poverty. The reality is poverty just gets bounced elsewhere

David Madden. 10 Oct 2013

It’s no secret that today’s big cities are massively unequal, and gentrification is now the predominant form of neighborhood development. In countless urban districts across the world, affordable housing is on the decline and displacement is on the rise. This is especially true in New York and London, where observers are straining to find sufficient prefixes (megahyper and super have all been aptly applied) to describe the pace at which gentrification is changing the city.

But most of the discussion about gentrification doesn’t do justice to everything at stake.

Here’s how gentrification talk typically goes: poor neighborhoods are said to need “regeneration" or "revitalization", as if lifelessness and torpor – as opposed to impoverishment and disempowerment – were the problem. Exclusion is rebranded as creative "renewal". The liberal mission to "increase diversity" is perversely used as an excuse to turn residents out of their homes in places like Harlem or Brixton – areas famous for their long histories of independent political and cultural scenes.

After gentrification takes hold, neighborhoods are commended for having “bounced back” from poverty, ignoring the fact that poverty has usually only been bounced elsewhere.”

Photo: Bill Cooper

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Mass Urban is a multidisciplinary design-research initiative concerned with contemporary cities and urbanism. Mass Urban was co-founded in April 2011 by David Lee and Cliff Lau.

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