Week 3: Gentrification: Futureeee – Detroit Community-Engaged Research Program

Week 3: Gentrification: Futureeee

Something that stood out to me in How to Kill a City is that it’s essentially manslaughter, in a few cases. Moskowitz spoke briefly about how Europeans from the queer community tend to flee their residing cities for a place that’s more likely accepting of things considered taboo, moderately safe to inhabit, and not very expensive to relocate to. While these groups of people have found their havens where they can celebrate their uniqueness in a unique place, it seems that other people with a nearly ridiculous amount of capital and knowledge of these relocations follow behind the marginalized group of queer individuals for the prospect of low rents, opportunity to squash what goes against status-quo, and change crime rates (for better or worse).

Reading this book has made me look at new businesses more closely, especially ones that have “Detroit” in their name. I wonder, “Are they a black-owned business?” and, “How do they give back to the community?” before I patronize overpriced products. Admittedly, it does put me on edge thinking about the future of Detroit. I am excited to see well-known names like Google, Amazon and Little Caesar’s arena. Yet, the description the book provides of cities looking more and more alike and losing their individuality gives way to the worry that eventually the world will advance only to plateau to a chrome uniformity. Needless to mention the precarious consequences emigration, power shifts and chaos that will grow if this process continues is enough to make anyone worry.

Spongebob – “SB-129”

3 thoughts on “Week 3: Gentrification: Futureeee”

  1. Thank you for this reflection! I really enjoy reading your perspective, and can say that you have given me a new way of looking at things. I often find myself second-guessing a purchase if I think it might be overpriced, but instead I want to take the time to think about who that purchase will be helping.

  2. Hi Myla!
    You are totally right, it is manslaughter. I agree that with gentrification eventually the whole world will just become uniform. We all do need to start thinking about the new businesses opening up.

  3. Hey Myla,
    I definitely also do a sort of double take at businesses that hold Detroit in their name or reap the benefits of being affiliated with Detroit in any way, but do little to impact the city or serve its community. Your statement about an inevitable chrome uniformity emerging if we continue on this path, was something I hadn’t considered but it made me think of Jane Jacobs’ book referenced in “How to Kill a City” and how she discussed what makes a city lively and bright, and the importance of that diversity and eclecticism.

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