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Old 04-28-2001, 10:27 AM
Jose's Avatar
Jose Jose is offline
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: East Harlem/El Barrio/Spanish Harlem
Posts: 272

On April 13, 2001 lynn wrote:

We all know Harlem's changing. Crime is down, average household income is up, and the neighborhood's growing. But is Harlem still an inner city? I know many people are resisting gentrification (i.e. "Harlem Fightback"). So my question is, given that Harlem used to be known as the capital of Black America, will gentrification make it turn white?

I replied:
I doubt that would happen given all the low income housing
(city housing), but i guess it is possible to
change the demographics somewhat if a large influx of
people move in from outside.

When you think about it, over a hundred year period, this
is bound to happen. East Harlem used to be known as
Polish Harlem, and Italian Harlem. But now its
Spanish Harlem. What will it be in a hundred years?
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Old 05-13-2001, 11:05 PM
Vanhalld Vanhalld is offline
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Join Date: May 2001
Location: 524 East 119th st.
Posts: 1

I guess i could be considered part of the gentrification of Harlem,
My name is Daniel and i just reciently moved up here from down town. I am a white american, and have lived in the state of NY for my entire life. I would like to say that i really love the community here in Spanish Harlem. I think the people here are very nice and there is a strong sence of community and i feel rich to be here. I however do not want to see the gentrification of the area. There is a unique and special quality about this place. While change is inevitable it has the potential to go many ways. I feel the biggest thing to avoid is commercialism. We need to stop big corporations from coming in here and destroying the community and way of life. This area does not need the influences of Starbucks Coffee, Blockbuster Video and Especial HOME DEPOT. These business will suck the life out of this area. They are not the jobs we need or the products we want here: they take the power out of the hands of the people. I would like to be an influencial part in the direction this barrio takes. When i found out that Home Depot was coming into the community i was truly saddend. Our politcal leaders sold us out. The great realestate from 119 to 116 along the east river has the potential for something much more integrated into the community i.e. parks, small shops, connection to the rive etc. An ostentacious Orange box with parking for 1500 cars will destroy this serene residential area, create conjestion, destroy small business, and cast people around into darkness. I feel this is an oportunity for the community to band togeather and make something happen. I look forward to hearing peoples response, please email me at vanhalld@aol.com

Live Well,
Daniel VanHall
Daniel C. VanHall
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Old 05-14-2001, 07:46 PM
Jose's Avatar
Jose Jose is offline
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: East Harlem/El Barrio/Spanish Harlem
Posts: 272
Talking That's interesting


Gentrification is a hard thing to accomplish in East Harlem.
Mainly because most of the housing stock is New York City
Housing Authoritiy housing. In other words, a high percentage
of those who live in East Harlem, live in the housing projects.

East Harlem has the highest percentage of housing projects
in the U.S.A. That means that you would have to move all those
people out of their housing project apartments to substantialliy
make a dent in who lives here. Since it's unlikely that that will
happen, it is not likely that the nature of this community will change.

I have lived here my whole life and support the idea of a Home Depot in
our community. The East River Plaza project (which will house the Home
Depot), is a very important addition to our community. First, it improves
an area of land that has not been used for decades. Secondly, it allows
East Harlemites access to a quality of goods we usually have to travel far
to acquire. Why should I go to Jersey to shop, when I can get the same quality
of goods here in my back yard?

If you poll the residents, most (especially women) love the idea of a Home Depot
in our community. My wife can't wait. And I thought that the jobs that it brings,
would be good for the community. Some people opposed the Pathmark on East
125th street. But today, you can go shopping there at 3:00 AM and still find lines.
Some have stopped shopping there, because there is no time when there are not
lines. Again, another good addition to our community.

If one can add betters goods, a better shopping experience and not change the
nature of a community, then I think it is a good idea. Of course, one does not
want to over develope, but we are not close to that yet.

Tell me what you think.
Oh, and welcome to the East Harlem community.

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Old 06-17-2001, 07:03 AM
muaddib muaddib is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 63
Gentrification, or the Dynamic nature of any community will change naturally over the coarse of time. El Barrio wasn't always Puerto Rican, Spanish or African-American. Many groups have come through El Barrio. Irish, Italian, Polish and so on. I would expect that 50-100 years from now, East Harlem will be considered Indian or whatever group moves here in droves during the next few decades.
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