Kate Elizabeth Queram, Route Fifty, March 21, 2019
“Seven cities [including Los Angeles and San Diego] account for almost half the gentrification in America, according to a study released March 19 by the National Community Reinvestment Coalition.
“The study defines gentrification as occurring when ‘an influx of investment and changes to the built environment leads to rising home values, family incomes, and educational levels of residents. That often leads to minorities being pushed out of their long-time neighborhoods, which the study defines as cultural displacement [as] white gentrifiers replace the incumbent residents.’
“That displacement disproportionately affected black and Hispanic residents, the report says. Thirteen percent of the black community in Portland, Oregon, was displaced in 10 years.
“Both gentrification and displacement are relatively rare nationally. Across the country, 24 percent of urban areas saw at least one tract gentrify from 2000 to 2013, according to the data. But ‘most low- to moderate-income neighborhoods did not gentrify or revitalize during the period of our study,’ researchers wrote. ‘They remained impoverished, untouched by investments and building booms that occurred in major cities, and vulnerable to future gentrification and displacement.’
“Local officials and advocates can combat gentrification by pursuing ‘policies that encourage investment while promoting the ability of existing residents to stay and benefit from revitalization,’ the report concludes. Strategies include developing partnerships between banks and community-based organizations to encourage equitable development, passing inclusionary zoning regulations, and tapping into federal programs that can identify neighborhoods at risk of gentrification.”