New Media Academy at Hollywood High School

My message: We must fight gentrification

Dear future president,

Gentrification is a process of renovation and revival of deteriorated urban neighborhoods by means of influx of more affluent residents. Which results in increased property values and the displacing of lower-income families and small businesses. I truly believe that gentrification is the process of whitewashing urban neighborhoods and displacing community and families.

An increase in median income, a decline in the proportion of racial minorities, which in turn reduce household size, as low-income families are replaced by young singles and couples. There is a decline in industrial uses an increases in in office or multimedia uses. There are also development of live-work “lofts” and high-end housing, retail, and restaurants.

What people don’t consider with gentrification is where the original lower-income people are going to go and how it would affect their lives. I was living in Boston the first time I experience gentrification. I knew what was going on but I couldn’t describe it.

I first learned about gentrification when my sister explained it to me and that phenomenon baffled me.

Per wikipedia:

“The construction of the Prudential Tower complex that was finished in 1964 along the northwest border of South End was a spark for this urban-renewal effort and the gentrification process for the area that surrounded it. The complex increased job availability in the area, and the cheap housing stock of South End began to attract a new wave of residents. The next 15 years saw an influx of predominantly affluent, young professionals who purchased and renovated houses in South End. Unfortunately, tension characterized the relationship between these new residents and the previous residents of the neighborhood. Clashes in the vision for the area’s future was the main source of conflict. The previous, poorer residents, contended that “renewal” should focus on bettering the plight of South End’s poor, while new, middle-class residents heavily favored private market investment opportunities and shunned efforts such as subsidized housing with the belief that they would flood the market and raise personal security concerns.”

In other words, after the Prudential Tower was built more jobs were created and the area got renewed. We should invest in our communities fix up the community for the current people, instead of moving them out. It’s not the right thing to do because it displaces people, and increases the rent.

In conclusion, if the president does not improve the conditions of urban neighborhoods it will affect all the current residents. Mr. president, we need to invest in our community for the current people, instead of moving them out because that’s a major injustice to all our current residents. It will improve our neighborhoods and it will not displace all the current residents. Also, we need you to decrease the rent because most people can’t afford it even though they have a job.


Kerson Chrispin

New Media Academy at Hollywood High School

Los Angeles, Calif.