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Old 02-26-2014, 07:00 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,757,248 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Agreed! Let me tell you all a little story.

I am an older Boomer.
My parents are older boomers! It is pretty funny, they embarked on this retirement plan of exburbia (like the rural areas they grew up in). Now they are thinking they might want to move closer in, to somewhere more walkable. If they can find something at the right price.

I started volunteering at a local nonprofit focused on transit/housing affordability/walkability. (Basically the mission in a nutshell is that everyone should be able to live in affordable place near transit and save on transportation costs.)

My dad was so excited, he said "this is a great mission, I am totally interested in this!"

A couple of years ago...walkability wasn't on his radar. That was for the kids in their 20s...like he did when he was that age.... Now my parents are mid to late 60s.
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Old 02-26-2014, 07:00 PM
 
2,388 posts, read 2,962,321 times
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Quote:
But I still think, in the US on the whole, people want more walkable neighborhoods. They don't have to be downtown or manhattan like. People won't be throwing away their cars completely, but the trends are we are driving less. And some people are downsizing from a 2 car household to a one car household.
Yes, this is happening almost everywhere. From Chattanooga and Little Rock to just about every small town in New Jersey and California.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
There is one area that is gentrifying that I'd like to keep my eye on. it is the one adjacent to my census tract. As long as it stays in range diversity wise, then we are doing good.
If everyone is upper-middle class it's cool as long as all races are well represented? Displacement, to the extent that it happens, is about money not about race.
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Old 02-26-2014, 07:14 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,079 posts, read 102,815,223 times
Reputation: 33147
Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
My parents are older boomers! It is pretty funny, they embarked on this retirement plan of exburbia (like the rural areas they grew up in). Now they are thinking they might want to move closer in, to somewhere more walkable. If they can find something at the right price.

I started volunteering at a local nonprofit focused on transit/housing affordability/walkability. (Basically the mission in a nutshell is that everyone should be able to live in affordable place near transit and save on transportation costs.)

My dad was so excited, he said "this is a great mission, I am totally interested in this!"

A couple of years ago...walkability wasn't on his radar. That was for the kids in their 20s...like he did when he was that age.... Now my parents are mid to late 60s.
I think we'll stay right where we are. Our house is almost paid for; our older daughter lives in the area and bought a house so it seems she and her DH plan to stay here. Our neighborhood isn't super walkable, but it's not remote, either. We have a transit service called "Call and Ride" that will take you around town for the regular fare. There is also "Special Transit" for seniors, and we're only 1/4 mile from a bus stop.
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Old 02-26-2014, 07:19 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,757,248 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drive carephilly View Post
If everyone is upper-middle class it's cool as long as all races are well represented? Displacement, to the extent that it happens, is about money not about race.
If the income shifts significantly it is a problem. My neighborhood has shifted by about 10%. Oakland's median has gone up I think 5% over the past few years.....

So that's OK. The neighborhood below mine was a a black young professional haven (like 40-50% black from my college years on, slightly lower average income than where I live -- I have more pricy single family homes than that neighborhood does. It is about 20% cheaper, but the mix is different. My area is about 60% multi family, 40% SFH. Average SFH is about $750k. This area below mine is around 75% multi family and the houses are more like $600-650k). If somehow it becomes like 10% black .....and loses the diversity there is a huge problem. California's issues are more about class than race. But of course those can be convoluted too. I live in a part of town not hurting for development, so the question is will it maintain its diversity, considering all of the attractive attributes of density, 1920s architecture, decent transit, good walkability, proximity to downtown and short commute to SF.

There are other areas, a little further away, I am not super familiar with, with totally different demographics. Like 2 miles south, there is a still affordable and walkable area that has a ton of South East Asians. I think it is pretty much equally mixed asian, white, black, latino, but there could be less white people than I think. Black flight happened there 30 years ago...so obviously that is out of my range to impact. That area is about 40% cheaper than mine, and it has also experienced a bit of gentrification. Like a new hipster soul food brunch place. But I also hear about a community market/cafe opening up that is going to sell locally grown asian produce for cheap to support small farmers and the south east asian population (and offer discounts for low income people). It is a pretty delicate balance.

Right now, there are are basically two types of desirable neighborhoods in Oakland. The walkable transit friendly ones that are safe/low crime. (These are available in both dense and single family home configurations). The posh hills homes with views of the Bay. These areas are selling and renting quickly and have seen lots of appreciation over the past 4 years.

The up and coming areas are the places with the attractive housing stock, a little farther from transit but close (in walking distance) to busy commercial districts. These are rapidly gentrifying. Also west oakland, because even thug commercial is lacking, it is all victorian homes. And we all know how people live those. But that is on a really long term redevelopment cycle, this area is at the highest risk for displacement.

And then the places where sales are slower: the suburban tracts in the high crime areas. These have the double whammy of crime and crappy transit (and no economic development). Low risk of displacement now. This part of town has been divested in for decades. The first chain grocery for 50 years opened a couple of weeks ago.

On a separate note, I don't think all millenials or all boomers or whatever are going to want the walkable stuff. But a good portion, enough to make it a trend to outstrip demand do. And we need to build accordingly. Before the people who need this type of development are priced out.
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Old 02-26-2014, 07:21 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,757,248 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
I think we'll stay right where we are. Our house is almost paid for; our older daughter lives in the area and bought a house so it seems she and her DH plan to stay here. Our neighborhood isn't super walkable, but it's not remote, either. We have a transit service called "Call and Ride" that will take you around town for the regular fare. There is also "Special Transit" for seniors, and we're only 1/4 mile from a bus stop.
Where my parents are, it isn't dense enough for a call and ride or transit. And it is about 5 miles from the nearest grocery! They do have a convinence store a few blocks away that does deliver if you call and ask.

But my mom's sister lives next door and they like their neighbors. I live 90 miles away.
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Old 02-26-2014, 07:26 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,079 posts, read 102,815,223 times
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^^I hope it all works out for them (and you!).
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Old 02-26-2014, 07:39 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,757,248 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
^^I hope it all works out for them (and you!).
Every time they visit they joke about moving to the senior housing a block drain my sister. They could walk to my sisters place and dad could walk to the cigar shop 2 blocks away.
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Old 02-26-2014, 07:58 PM
 
563 posts, read 682,299 times
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While a lot of people do want more urban/walkable neighborhoods, there are still many families who are leaving the Northeast and California, both of which have implemented smart growth strategies and are expensive, for exurbs in those areas, or sprawling and booming regions such as Texas, Atlanta, and North Carolina.

What's everyone else's thoughts on this?
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Old 02-26-2014, 08:55 PM
 
2,388 posts, read 2,962,321 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
If the income shifts significantly it is a problem. My neighborhood has shifted by about 10%. Oakland's median has gone up I think 5% over the past few years.....

So that's OK. The neighborhood below mine was a a black young professional haven (like 40-50% black from my college years on, slightly lower average income than where I live -- I have more pricy single family homes than that neighborhood does. It is about 20% cheaper, but the mix is different. My area is about 60% multi family, 40% SFH. Average SFH is about $750k. This area below mine is around 75% multi family and the houses are more like $600-650k). If somehow it becomes like 10% black .....and loses the diversity there is a huge problem.
Wouldn't that really depend on why people are leaving?

Is this a neighborhood with high homeownership among black households? If so then wouldn't those climbing sale prices be driven by families cashing out? I don't see a problem with that.

Are these neighborhoods growing or losing population? What's the median age? Is this a neighborhood that's shrinking as people get old and die? If your neighborhood has been losing 1000 people a decade for the last 40 years then in the last decade 500 white people move in is it accurate to characterize that as displacement?

For instance, there's a tiny borough called Woodlynne, NJ that's wedged in between Camden and Collingswood. The town has lost much of its white population over the last 30 years but from the data it would appear that white people in the family formation stage had left the town long before that and as the white population got older it shrunk naturally. The black, latino and asian families who were moving in had higher household incomes than the white households they were replacing (these are mostly middle class families getting out of the Camden school district - Woodlynne kids go to Collingswood schools).

No one is going to call that gentrification even though if the scenario was reversed (as it often is) most people wouldn't hesitate to call it gentrification without bothering to look into what's actually happening.

Gentrification is a really loaded term that (like the word "hipster") is so overused and misused that it's lost most of its meaning. It's also become a code word for some people. No one wants to say "we don't want white people here" in public so they talk about "fighting gentrification" even when "gentrification" doesn't accurately describe what's happening in that particular neighborhood. (*not saying this describes you just that it happens)


Quote:
Also west oakland, because even thug commercial is lacking,
lol. never heard that before but I'm gonna guess that would describe the businesses in my immediate neighborhood to a T. Interesting about victorian neighborhoods in West Oakland though. I was unaware.
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Old 02-26-2014, 09:11 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,757,248 times
Reputation: 26681
Quote:
Originally Posted by never-more View Post
While a lot of people do want more urban/walkable neighborhoods, there are still many families who are leaving the Northeast and California, both of which have implemented smart growth strategies and are expensive, for exurbs in those areas, or sprawling and booming regions such as Texas, Atlanta, and North Carolina.

What's everyone else's thoughts on this?
Well here in the Bay Area, the exurbs are losing favor too. I have a friend who lives in one. Most of her neighborhood is empty, so the remaking people have to band together a lot more. The robberies and breaking increased because the thieves know nobody is around so they can raid the homes for parts. And then of course most people have long commutes so they can scope and be assured no one will see them when they come back. She lives in a nicer exurb, but now they al have security cameras and alarms. A lot of people left the region all together. The commutes were too taxing and quality of life sucked. So they were off to texans or whatever. We have a serious affordability and inventory problem. The right kind if housing sells quickly and over asking price the wrong stuff lingers....
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