Gentrification Is Masqueraded as Revitalization Essays

1810 Words May 10th, 2008 8 Pages
Gentrification is Masqueraded as Revitalization
According to The Oxford English Dictionary, gentrification is defined as the renovation and improvement of a house or district so that it conforms to middle-class taste (Oxford English Dictionary). This definition absolutely fits the description of the current transformation of the inner City of Baltimore. When we look at neighborhoods such as Westport, Federal Hill, and Canton, it is evident that gentrification is on the City of Baltimore’s agenda. During the last two terms that Mayor Martin O’Mally has presided over the city, there have been many changes in administration and the population that are causing devastating effects on the city’s blue collar residents. The Baltimore City
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Many residents are unable to afford the high costs of city living due to the process of gentrification that is currently underway in Baltimore City (“Rent Control”). Baltimore City’s remaining neighborhoods continue to fight for funding of the revitalization projects in their communities. Many areas are intentionally targeted for decay so that large companies are able to purchase enormous amounts of land at nominal fees. This is taken place in the areas surrounding Johns Hopkins Hospital and Television Hill. Many Baltimore residents feel the same about the changes that are taking place in the city, disgusted. Baltimore City’s Department of Planning meet with developers that have their eyes set on a particular piece of property, they strategize how to appropriately carry out their plans in a manner that will not raise too many eyebrows (“The Mortgage Bubble Invades Baltimore”). Many areas are targeted because of their prime retail locations, but most are targeted because of its connection or proximity to the downtown Inner Harbor corridor (“O’Mally: Eminent domain not out of the question”). This is what has happened to the low income communities adjacent to the Inner Harbor east and west. The low income housing projects have been torn down and replaced with mixed income developments as a pacifier. This small token is to satisfy the city residents and create a distraction from projects like Cherry Hill and Reservoir Hill.

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