These Anti-Displacement Policy Case Studies look at three neighborhoods that were vulnerable to, but did not experience, gentrification and displacement in recent years. We discuss the features of these places and the strategies their cities used to limit their displacement.
Chinatown is situated at the center of San Francisco’s booming real estate market, with close proximity to the Financial District, Downtown, and affluent neighborhoods such as Russian Hill. Due to its prime location, it was expected that Chinatown would have succumbed to the pressures of development and speculation that have transformed surrounding areas and much of San Francisco. However, deliberate anti-displacement zoning policies, widespread rent control, and a well-organized community have preserved Chinatown as an Asian American and low-income enclave.
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- All the neighborhoods surrounding Chinatown have experienced dramatic growth in rent, while the case study neighborhood has remained exceptionally stable.
- Rezoning in the 1980s, the city’s single-room occupancy policy, and rent control have all protected the neighborhood’s large stock of affordable housing.
- A strong, organized community has played a key role in the neighborhood’s ability to resist gentrification.