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Old 09-28-2009, 10:13 PM
 
Location: Rockville, MD
3,547 posts, read 7,876,111 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bellyofthebeast View Post
While I agree that those far flung neighborhoods will take a much longer time to gentrify than other areas have, I feel like gentrification will continue to happen as long as there is less DC proper housing stock than there is demand. Sure, people want to live in a nice, classy townhouse in a hip neighborhood, but they also want a shorter commute, more than anything. I've heard about new development and gentrification in all of those neighborhoods listed, save Mt. Ranier.
I promise you that you have seen no gentrification in Ivy City. And Benning Road...well, some of the local neighborhood activists are attempting to keep out what would be the only sit-down restaurant along the corridor. Trinidad is known more for police checkpoints than gentrification and hipster-ism. Keep in mind that "gentrification" isn't simply a handful of rich, white people moving into a neighborhood; it is a fundamental change in the neighborhood's character. You may see (and are seeing) people moving to places like Michigan Park, but it wouldn't be accurate to label that as gentrification, since it's not really changing the core of the neighborhood that much.

And a shorter commute is important, but by no means the predominant criteria. I'd argue that safety trumps all, followed by affordability, then commute time and neighborhood amenities.

Which is not to say that these neighborhoods will *never* gentrify. Anything's possible. Affordable housing, probably more than anything, is what would attract people to those neighborhoods. But keep in mind that these neighborhoods aren't simply competing against other DC neghborhoods, but close-in neighborhoods in VA and MD as well.

In short, if you're holding your breath waiting for property values to skyrocket and commercial development to soar in a place like Carver-Langston, you're going to be holding your breath awhile.
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Old 09-29-2009, 12:39 AM
 
Location: H street NE
188 posts, read 625,963 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 14thandYou View Post
I promise you that you have seen no gentrification in Ivy City. And Benning Road...well, some of the local neighborhood activists are attempting to keep out what would be the only sit-down restaurant along the corridor. Trinidad is known more for police checkpoints than gentrification and hipster-ism. Keep in mind that "gentrification" isn't simply a handful of rich, white people moving into a neighborhood; it is a fundamental change in the neighborhood's character. You may see (and are seeing) people moving to places like Michigan Park, but it wouldn't be accurate to label that as gentrification, since it's not really changing the core of the neighborhood that much.

And a shorter commute is important, but by no means the predominant criteria. I'd argue that safety trumps all, followed by affordability, then commute time and neighborhood amenities.
I guess what I meant is that I've heard of revitalization in the sense of people buying and renovating old houses in all those neighborhoods. Its true that this kind of small scale revitalization isn't necessarily indicative of large scale change, but its always the beginning.

While I agree somewhat with the Safety then Affordability then Commute then Amenities order you mentioned, I think that one of the key catalysts in gentrification is that first group of people who are willing to sacrifice safety for commute time and affordability. For most middle class people who want to live in the district, I think the order is definitely S, Af, C, Am. Is there a book somewhere on this crazy crap? I would totally read it.

However, I really do think that the higher crime neighborhoods that aren't adjacent to a metro station will really take the longest to gentrify, simply because I imagine people will try and go anywhere else they can first.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 14thandYou View Post
Which is not to say that these neighborhoods will *never* gentrify. Anything's possible. Affordable housing, probably more than anything, is what would attract people to those neighborhoods. But keep in mind that these neighborhoods aren't simply competing against other DC neghborhoods, but close-in neighborhoods in VA and MD as well.
I'd also argue that nothing in close in VA could really be a candidate for gentrification on the same level that is happening in DC. A Columbia Pike streetcar would very much change that I think, although that would be just straight development rather than redevelopment.
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Old 09-29-2009, 06:40 AM
 
Location: Metro Washington DC
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If DC public schools don't get better, it could stall gentrification. Just a thought. I don't know though.
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Old 09-29-2009, 08:33 AM
 
Location: DC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dkf747 View Post
If DC public schools don't get better, it could stall gentrification. Just a thought. I don't know though.
It makes it more difficult to hold onto families (or attract them). But then again, a lot of education can depend on the community, so if you have a neighborhood of active involved parents it could help the school improve as well. I read the article on Michelle Rhee in the WaPo where she was talking about trying to attract that "first bunch" of parents to DC schools.
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Old 09-29-2009, 09:46 AM
 
12,787 posts, read 18,571,053 times
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I tend to agree it will take alot to gentrify those far-flung areas of DC. But its far from impossible.

Back in the 70s, if you had told me that 14th and U would become trendy, I as well as others, would have thought you insane. It epitomized the scarring from the 68 riots. But eventually it came around.

Back then Logan Circle was an enclave and Adams-Morgan was on the edge of dodge city.
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Old 09-29-2009, 11:48 AM
 
Location: H street NE
188 posts, read 625,963 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moth View Post
I tend to agree it will take alot to gentrify those far-flung areas of DC. But its far from impossible.

Back in the 70s, if you had told me that 14th and U would become trendy, I as well as others, would have thought you insane. It epitomized the scarring from the 68 riots. But eventually it came around.

Back then Logan Circle was an enclave and Adams-Morgan was on the edge of dodge city.
Do you think that the idea of 14th and U gentrifying would have been a less crazy idea if the green line had been completed around the same time as the rest of the metro system?
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Old 09-29-2009, 12:30 PM
 
Location: Rockville, MD
3,547 posts, read 7,876,111 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moth View Post
I tend to agree it will take alot to gentrify those far-flung areas of DC. But its far from impossible.

Back in the 70s, if you had told me that 14th and U would become trendy, I as well as others, would have thought you insane. It epitomized the scarring from the 68 riots. But eventually it came around.

Back then Logan Circle was an enclave and Adams-Morgan was on the edge of dodge city.
I don't feel any neighborhood turning around is impossible. Indeed, Logan Circle/U Street were absolutely destitute for decades after the riots. So, yes, anything can happen.

But in Logan/U Street you are talking about an area that had at one time been a thirivng commercial corridor and upscale residential neighborhood, and thus had the infrastructure to support its rebirth. An area such as that which is around eastern NY Avenue has never been anything other than what it is today: a largely industrial corridor surrounded by light commercial and working class housing. For it to turn into a Logan Circle would require drastic changes that would morph it into something the area has never been before.

So, no, such a thing is not impossible or beyond the bounds of credulity. But it will take an extensive amount of work, and it will not happen within 20 years.
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Old 09-29-2009, 12:55 PM
 
Location: H street NE
188 posts, read 625,963 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 14thandYou View Post
An area such as that which is around eastern NY Avenue has never been anything other than what it is today: a largely industrial corridor surrounded by light commercial and working class housing. For it to turn into a Logan Circle would require drastic changes that would morph it into something the area has never been before.
I really don't know how that area could ever be turned into a Logan Circle. It would have to be almost entirely new development, most of which looks like garbage to me. If anything it would turn into a Pentagon City or North Arlington.

When are people going to learn how to build beautiful townhouses again? We've seriously forgotten. The ones being built near Navy Yard look decent but they are pretty much trying to carbon copy early 1900's era townhouses

Also, speaking of circles, apparently the NY Ave/FLA Ave intersection is going to be turned into a circle called Dave Thomas Circle, because of the beloved wendy's there. The world is coming to an end or world peace is about to occur, I'm not sure which.
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Old 09-29-2009, 01:42 PM
 
Location: Silver Spring, MD
741 posts, read 2,612,873 times
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gentrification is such a misaligned improper used word to describe the changes in DC's neighborhoods in the past 15 years.

Gentrification really NEVER stops... neighborhoods change from up and down for all sorts of reasons, some go up gradually some decline, some spike... it happens more often than you think.

My neighborhood use to be filled with Jewish people, then it became highly African American, now perhaps its slowly getting more diverse with a large influx of Latinos and others. So it "gentrified" 3 times..

this blanket statement that a neighborhood "gentrifies" because new people with more disposable income come in and property values rise, and suddenly Trader Joe's and Starbucks show up in the corner is a statement that I am tired of hearing. It's over used.

Just say I hope my neighborhood offers better value and cost of living than when I first moved in. Hopefuly that will continue, and perhaps happen where I live as well... Progress has been slow and with the economy lately everything is in a holding pattern.

But I've been seeing DC change for the past 8-9 years, it's quite impressive how some of the neighborhoods are different from even back then, it is amazing. Columbia Heights is probably the biggest example of that, and some of that mentality has spread across the borders (downtown Silver Spring is a little bit of an example).
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Old 09-29-2009, 03:01 PM
 
12,787 posts, read 18,571,053 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bellyofthebeast View Post
Do you think that the idea of 14th and U gentrifying would have been a less crazy idea if the green line had been completed around the same time as the rest of the metro system?
Well, to be honest, the idea of the Green Line was met with a bit of apprehension back in the day as it was planned to traverse mostly sketchy areas. However, I should also note that this feeling never amounted to any resistance to it.

A friend of mine who studies urban issues said the catalyst for the rebirth of 14th and U was none other than Marion Barry, who built a DC government building there. This was the first new construction in a generation and inspired a bit of confidence.

I have no idea if that it is true as I was in New York at the time. However, my friend, if nothing else, is usually right about these things. Ironic that Barry would assist in something that would ultimately go against his constituency.
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