5.4.16

DILUTING THE TOXIC CULTURE.

A recent Strong Towns post summarizes recent research on the way dysfunction is less likely to be contagious in mixed-income neighborhoods.
Even the small steps—like lowering the poverty rate in a kid’s neighborhood from 75 percent to less than half—pays clear economic dividends.

But we also need to remember that integration isn’t just about moving around people with low incomes. We can reinvest in neighborhoods of concentrated poverty in ways that improve quality of life and enhance opportunity in place.
Sometimes that reinvestment takes the form of gentrification.  "[Y]our place, wherever it is, will be a more livable place if you and your family are capable of living competently, and more so if your neighbors also are."  Conscious efforts at neighborhood redesign are likely to smash into the Law of Unintended Consequences, and ought be used only with great care.  Unfortunately, though, some neighborhoods and communities might already be irretrievably lost to the yobs.

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