The Chocolate City has slipped some cream in the cup and folks are starting to notice all over the country. The city that was the first on record to become a majority black town was Washington, D.C. They’ve managed to maintain that status until recently when the nationwide gentrification touched down there a few years ago.
According to the New York Times, black residents felt they got the bait and switch by former mayor Adrian Fenty when so-called “revitalization” projects were springing up all over the city. Their local chicken shacks and corner stores were turned into bike trails, dog parks, styled lamp posts and streetcar tracks. While this may sound like great upgrades, the taxes that come along with it were steep.
A lot of the longtime African-American residents were hit hard by the tax bills that have forced out many residents and business owners. But as they move out, many affluent whites have replaced them and the black population has slipped under 50 percent for the first time since gaining majority 51 years ago, according to the Brookings Institution’s senior demographer William Frey.
This story may sound quite familiar to a lot of people as gentrification has been a problem for the last 10 years in a lot of major cities throughout America.
Read more here on how it’s being played out in D.C. Tell us what’s going on in your neighborhood.