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  #21  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2019, 6:02 PM
Obadno Obadno is offline
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Article about this from the Financial times today:

Pro Gentirfication

Quote:
Editor's note: This story is available as a result of a content partnership with the Financial Times. Subscribers will see stories like this every day on our website (and in our daily emails) as an added value to your subscription.

Gentrification is more beneficial for the original residents of a neighbourhood than previously thought, according to a new study of fast-improving city neighbourhoods across the US.

Instead the trend increases college attendance and reduces poverty exposure of the many who stay, including the most disadvantaged, and does not make the leavers worse off, a report published on Tuesday by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia found.

The Philadelphia Fed looked at the 100 most populous metro areas in the US and concluded that “gentrification creates some important benefits for original resident adults and children and few observable harms”.

High-income and college-educated people in the US have increasingly chosen to live in central urban neighbourhoods over the past two decades, reversing decades of urban decline. This process of gentrification has until now been widely thought to be associated with the displacement of original residents and a worsening of their conditions.

However the Philadelphia Fed study, which the regional central bank said was the first comprehensive national look at how gentrification affects a broad set of outcomes for adults and children, found that many less-educated adults remain in gentrifying neighbourhoods and benefit from declining poverty exposure and increasing house values.

Those who leave tend to go to areas with similar labour market income or commuting conditions and “do not end up in worse neighbourhoods or with worse labour market outcomes”, the report’s authors Quentin Brummet and Davin Reed found.

The process of gentrification reduces children’s exposure to poverty and they gain more experience of better education and employment conditions, “all of which have been shown to be correlated with greater economic opportunity”, according to Mr Brummet and Mr Reed.

Children in less-educated households in gentrifying areas are more likely to attend and complete college, the researchers found; they suggested that was because “the increased exposure to college-educated adults could provide role models, information or networks”.

The findings have clear policy implications, the researchers concluded.

Worries that gentrification will harm existing residents have fuelled support for expensive policies like rent control and been cited as an obstacle to building more housing. But the report suggested that local authorities in urban areas should focus on developing gentrifying areas while helping residents to stay.

“Increasing housing supply in high-demand urban areas could increase the opportunity benefits [and] reduce outmigration pressure,” the report said.

In particular the researchers championed policies that aim to increase disadvantaged children’s exposure to better local areas, such as subsidies to help their families stay in improving neighbourhoods; this would increase their chances of better education and employment outcome, the researchers said.
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  #22  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2019, 6:32 PM
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Pedestrian Pedestrian is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
Once again, gentrification is the changing of a neighborhood from a lower socio-economic-status to a higher socio-economic status. It is entirely unrelated to densification, except insofar as in most parts of the country (barring very high-cost areas along the coasts) vacant lots in rock-bottom neighborhoods don't get infill without some sort of subsidies.

If you look at virtually any city's zoning map, you will invariably see that the poorest residential neighborhoods tend to have much, much more permissive zoning than the middle class to wealthy ones.
Absolutely NOT true in San Francisco.

Take the Tenderloin, the most contentious bit of land at one point (the fight there is now largely over and the policies to prevent it gentrifying solid) because of its central location adjacent to the city's premier shopping and tourist zone around Union Square:

Quote:
There are actually specific policy reasons the Tenderloin has remained relatively affordable and hasn't gentrified to the same degree as the rest of the city.

Nonprofit land acquisition

"There was an aggressive nonprofit acquisition of land when land was still cheap," Shaw said.

Today, nonprofits have held onto much of that property, and many of them run affordable housing programs — preserving that land at below-market rates.

Zoning policies to prevent high-rise building

Back when the Tenderloin residents organized in the early 1980s, one of the things they focused on was preventing luxury condos from coming in.

"In 1985, we rezoned the neighborhood to prevent any building over 13 stories, so someone could not pick up a piece of land and build a 35-story luxury condominium in the Tenderloin because the zoning prohibits it," Shaw said. Non-residential uses above the second floor are also specifically regulated.

These limits make it unappealing for developers
who have to weigh the costs of building with the potential for profit. While higher density could also lead to more affordable housing, residents considered the risk of luxury development to be more likely.

Protections for those SROs

The city also made it very hard to get rid of SROs and their tenants (by, among other things, banning conversion of monthly rental SROs to nightly rental tourist hotels). The Tenderloin and nearby Chinatown have the most SROs of all the neighborhoods in San Francisco.

"So we now have all of this housing stock, which again is protected for low income," Shaw said. "The gentry don't want to move into a room without a kitchen or private bath, so SROs are pretty immune to gentrification."

Historic protections

Much of the neighborhood is a historic district, and many of the buildings are protected. Many also predate the passage of the city's rent-control ordinance, which comes with a number of its own protections.

"Their goal was to protect the neighborhood from the speculative real estate market," said Jeff Buckley, the mayor's senior adviser on housing policy. All of those policies add up and have made 25 to 29 percent of the housing units in the Tenderloin permanently affordable, he said.
https://www.kqed.org/news/11665527/w...-san-francisco

These days, other neighborhoods, especially the Mission District, are attempting to follow a similar course.
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  #23  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2019, 6:47 PM
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Buckman821 Buckman821 is offline
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Originally Posted by Encolpius View Post
we know developers and banks won't ever fix the housing shortage, anyway, so why surrender our neighborhoods to them?
Well they certainly won't be fixing it while this attitude is pervasive.
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  #24  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2019, 7:07 PM
eschaton eschaton is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pedestrian View Post
Absolutely NOT true in San Francisco.

Take the Tenderloin, the most contentious bit of land at one point (the fight there is now largely over and the policies to prevent it gentrifying solid) because of its central location adjacent to the city's premier shopping and tourist zone around Union Square:


https://www.kqed.org/news/11665527/w...-san-francisco

These days, other neighborhoods, especially the Mission District, are attempting to follow a similar course.
By national standards, allowing 13-story residential buildings is remarkably lenient zoning.

Hell, by San Francisco standards that's pretty lenient too, considering how many neighborhoods cap development at three stories.
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  #25  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2019, 8:10 PM
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Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
By national standards, allowing 13-story residential buildings is remarkably lenient zoning.

Hell, by San Francisco standards that's pretty lenient too, considering how many neighborhoods cap development at three stories.
The 13 story buildings were there which is why the height limit was set at that level--this is a downtown urban neighborhood after all and that 13 stories contrasts with much taller limits on Russian or Rincon Hills or around Union Sqaure nearby. The Tenderloin was developed mostly well before WW II. Actually, in the transition zone between the Tenderloin and Nob Hill (sometimes called "Baja Nob Hill" by real estate people) there are some great old prewar apartment buildings from the 20's and 30's--Dashiell Hammett country. This one, on Post St., is where Hammett actually lived while writing The Maltese Falcon:


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dashiell_Hammett
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  #26  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2019, 10:39 PM
floor23 floor23 is offline
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to respond to the OP's question of whether this happens in my city or not:

On the island of Oahu(City & County of Honolulu) nimbys aren't really a concern and I can't recall them ever really blocking a project. Only on the windward side and north shore do they make a lot noise and quite frankly the developments they're fighting are suburban-style projects, the kind that many people on this forum frown upon.

The biggest impediments to urban development on Oahu is financing and sewage infrastructure.

On the other islands (Maui, Kauai, and Big Island) nimbys wield a lot of political power, but on Oahu they're 100% bark and no bite. I work with a lot of developers and never once have they listed nimby opposition as a concern.

From a developers perspective I'd say it's easier to get entitltements for a residential high-rise in Honolulu than it is in any of the west coast cities (SF/LA/Seattle/Portland).
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  #27  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2019, 10:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
My understanding is Chicago is pretty unique in terms of major U.S. cities in that it effectively allows aldermen "pocket vetoes" over any development in their district. This is a horrible system, because it creates all kinds of incentives for developers to provide kickbacks to particular aldermen if they want a particular project to go forward.
IMO, Chicago benefited from this system more than it suffered. In a nation where most big cities have seen 60+ years of anti-development fervor, Chicago developers - not just big players, but plenty of small-time guys as well - had a way to move projects through the gridlock that their counterparts in other cities did not have. Not just mega complexes and highrises, but tons of missing middle as well. The result today is a far more affordable housing stock than, say, Boston or Washington DC.

Moving forward, it would be great for the aldermanic system to get replaced with a permissive bureaucratic system that enables plenty of new housing without corruption, but my fear is that the good-government push will just choke off the supply and give us a coastal housing market without the incomes or economic vitality to match.

Quote:
First, low-income neighborhoods tend to be pro-development up to a certain point. No one really wants to see abandoned homes and vacant lots peppering the neighborhoods forever. And to the degree to which most cities build "missing middle" housing at all (modern-day two-flats/three-flats and the like) they tend to be heavily concentrated in lower-income neighborhoods, where there isn't a strong demand for SFH-only zones.
Generally speaking, the neighborhoods in Chicago most opposed to gentrification don't have a lot of abandoned homes or vacant lots - those things tend to be confined to Black neighborhoods. The Latino neighborhoods in the crosshairs of gentrification tend to be pretty well-kept, if low-income, due to a more peaceful racial transition back in the 70s/80s. I know LA has a similar pattern of gentrification, probably other cities as well.

Black neighborhoods plagued by vacancy DO tend to be pro-development, to some extent, but developers don't usually see any demand to live in those neighborhoods, perhaps because of racism but also just because the sheer amount of vacancy makes them less livable places.

Quote:
Second, the initial phases of gentrification tend to lower density rather than raising it. A neighborhood must be fairly far along the gentrification process before market-rate infill is warranted in most of the country.
Arguably there is no "correct" number of people to occupy a given unit of housing other than the number of bedrooms. If a couple with two children moves out of a two-bedroom apartment and is replaced with two roommates, the density is cut in half, but I'm hard-pressed to call that a bad thing. What offends me is the "de-conversions", a handy term left over from the 60s that somehow implies that all buildings should rightfully be single-family homes, even when they were purpose-built for two or three apartments.
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  #28  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2019, 11:28 PM
llamaorama llamaorama is offline
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Whether gentrification harms or displaces existing residents is one thing.

There's also the long-term issue of re-shuffling the geography of affordability.

I get the feeling that what's going to happen is that we are taking centrally located high poverty, high crime, low education attainment areas that happened to have great transit, were close to major employment centers and home to businesses with philanthropic activities as well as legacy civic wealth(institutions, cultural and parks facilities, etc) and replacing them with high poverty, high crime, low education attainment areas that are on the exurban fringe and have none of those things.
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  #29  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2019, 8:35 PM
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Alxx611 Alxx611 is offline
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I'm seeing this phenomenon a bit in New Orleans. I work in the affordable housing industry myself, but I find it a bit hypocritical to see folks I know in the affordable housing advocacy world that claim to be YIMBY (Yes in My Back Yard) but then totally derail private projects over the affordability issue. Some of those projects will even have an affordable housing component, yet people will derail the project for not having the desired number of affordable units or AMI level. Their grievances should be with policy makers, not private developers.

However, I do think this type of resistance is okay when its a large project that is receiving public money or other large kickbacks.
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