Category: Black, Race + American

Can Neighborhoods Be Revitalized Without Gentrifying Them?

“Can Neighborhoods Be Revitalized Without Gentrifying Them? ” by Michelle Chen on The Nation

“Approaching the anniversary of Freddie Gray’s death, many doubt justice will be delivered in court. But outside, his neighborhood may be seeding the foundations of a new home. Land held in trust can infuse a neighborhood with invaluable hope, beyond its market value—an investment that everyone, with a little commitment, can afford.”

#Edmondson Avenue, West Side, #Baltimore.

#Edmondson Avenue, West Side, #Baltimore.

Edmondson Ave.West Side

Posted by Straight Outta Baltimore on Monday, April 4, 2016

A crusade to defeat the legacy of highways rammed through poor neighborhoods

“A Crusade to defeat the legacy of highways rammed through poor neighborhoods” by Ashley Halsey III on Washington Post

“Often, as Foxx’s research documents, when an interstate reached a city, urban planners routed highways through the poorest parts of town, presenting their plans as an all-purpose solution that found the expressway a home while renewing blighted neighborhoods by bulldozing through them.”

These crumbs are not conversation starters

‘The Tenth’ Zine is a flawless response to #GayMediaSoWhite & Awful Gay Magazines

“While some fashion magazines have published a special “all-black” issue, and black magazines sometimes run a story through an LGBT-lens and gay magazines will put the President on the cover even though he happens to be black, we shouldn’t be beginning for these crumbs. These crumbs are not conversation-starters. They are not meant to fulfill, but to pacify. What we need is to build our own goddamn table, and you know it’s gotta be at least ten times better.”

The Third Rail: Transit, Race and Inequality in Baltimore

What a great first sentence: “The Baltimore riot of April 27, 2015, started with a shutdown of public transportation”

The Third Rail by ALEC MACGILLIS on Places Journal


My favorite paragraphs, so well written:

“It was almost as if authorities were trying to engineer the confrontation that ensued between the growing mass of stranded youths and the outnumbered cops. Rocks and debris were hurled in both directions: Ramallah in Baltimore. So ill-conceived was the decision that, even after months of pressing by local reporters, no one claimed credit for having issued it — not the mayor’s office, not the transit system, not the schools, not the cops. The closure became an act of nature, as unavoidable as a power failure in a storm: transit was shut down.”

“The ‪#‎BaltimoreBeltway‬ — a.k.a., I-695 — was the very first metropolitan loop completed as part of the Interstate System. First planned in the late ’40s and finished in 1962, this high-speed expressway not only allowed motorists to access a much broader radius than had the older streetcars or even arterial roads; it also made possible a whole new realm of suburban existence — a circuit of edge cities and shopping malls running from ‪#‎Towson‬ in the north to ‪#‎Columbia‬ in the south — that could bypass the fading old city entirely.”

“”Once, the city’s thriving ‪#‎Jewish‬ community had gathered in dignified temples on the rim of ‪#‎DruidHill‬, stunning markers of immigrant success over a couple of generations. 5 But in the postwar years these were abandoned for wan substitutes like the synagogue in the ‪#‎OwingsMills‬ business park, across from the ready-mix concrete plant.”

“Baltimore had unraveled — had been unraveling for decades, unspooling itself over a wide expanse of central ‪#‎Maryland‬. And to make it possible to traverse the new metropolitan distances, the state proposed a transportation solution that underscored the starkly bifurcated politics of city and suburb, black and white. For those in cars, there would be more highways; including, notably, an expressway to connect the ‪#‎harborside‬ downtown on the east with ‪#‎I70‬, the transcontinental Interstate that ended not with a link to I-95, as planned, but at a park-and-ride on the western edge of town. To construct this elevated roadway required knocking down much of ‪#‎HarlemPark‬ — one of the near west neighborhoods that had long been a stronghold of middle-class African-American community. If you went by in 1969, you’d have seen the painted interior doors from the demolished homes — blue, pink, red — standing forlorn guard in a circle around the gray rubble.”