The Real Deal New York

South Bronx organizers warn of encroaching gentrification

December 09, 2013 02:55PM

The South Bronx may not yet be an increasingly pricey hipster haven like the Lower East Side, Williamsburg or Bushwick, but local residents are already wary of creeping gentrification.

Community organizers convened the borough’s first annual gentrification conference Saturday, warning residents that speculation and an out-of-control real estate market is a threat to the affordability of their homes, DNAinfo reported.

“A lot of people who live in this neighborhood are not aware of [gentrification] because there aren’t a lot of signs, Starbucks, restaurants, things like this,” Ed Morales, an author who helped organize the conference, told onlookers. “But it’s very perilous.”

The annual median income in the South Bronx is around $17,000, well below the federal poverty line, and a number of residents reside in public housing or rent-regulated apartments. For locals who already shell out as much as half their income on rent, panelists said, the Bronx becoming the next East Harlem would only threaten them further.

Ted Weinstein, director of Bronx planning for the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development, sang a different tune however, pointing to the potential good that comes along with private development. Such activity could revitalize the South Bronx, he told the panel, bringing increasingly diverse retail, improved health and education.

“Sometimes concerns about gentrification can turn into an anti-development attitude,” he told DNAinfo. [DNAinfo]Julie Strickland

  • marknroses

    Money won’t chase a dangerous hood, so that’s the only way to keep values low in SB.

  • David

    I can’t picture dooshy hipster Libtaaards with those gay hats tooling around the neighborhood.

  • brklynmind

    The Bronx is a big boro. It would benefit ALL to have at least one urban neighborhood (as opposed to Riverdale which is largely suburban) gentrify. Sure it would raise rents in whatever parts gentrified, but it would bring much needed attention, resources and exposure to an otherwise ignored borough of 1.5Million. It would take generations to gentrify large sections of the Bronx, so the affordability argument is weak in this case.

  • BronxMets

    yeh that’s it lets keep it poor that’s a great idea. why move forward. it was that moronic thinking that made the south Bronx the rat hole it is today.

  • Brian Perez

    i just recently moved to the bronx east bronx and i like is very suburban but it definately courld use some life and better bussiness the bussinees in the areas now are boring not exciting they really dont do anything to enhace the area so i hope they get replaced with something much better