Thursday, April 20, 2006


I find the development/revitalization/gentrification of the so-called U Street Corridor in Northwest DC to be absolutely fascinating. Despite what some may think, I don't believe there are any "bad guys" and it's hard to say who the winners and losers really are. One the one hand you have to feel for a traditionally black working class neighborhood that is essentially be marginalized by an influx of commercial development catering to the young and upwardly mobile. The idea of longstanding DC residents being "costed" into PG County is certainly not pleasant. One of the interesting aspects of that neighborhood is its ecclecticism with gay, straight, black, white, working class, and middle class residents all living near one another.

However if the "preservation" of a certain area means that it has to languish economically while retail and residential spaces remain vacant or run down, is that really doing anyone any good? My usual gut response is to let the free market work itself out but this one is going to be painful.

The latest debate as reported in today's WaPo.


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