Learning From Jane Jacobs, Who Saw Today’s City Yesterday

A cautionary tale.


From the NYTimes:

“[Jacobs] feared the collusion and self-dealing that can accompany [certain] projects. She looked around her at urban renewal, and at housing projects in particular, and saw only disastrous outcomes for the poor and enrichment for the developer class.

…“monstrous hybrids,” for the unhealthy partnerships that can arise between governments and big businesses. From the earliest days of his career, Trump has operated on the precise model…relying on contacts in state and city government,…In the 1970s, in a deal with the Urban Development Corporation, Trump acquired the Commodore Hotel, near Grand Central Terminal, in exchange for big tax breaks that would extend for decades. …this was the beginning of the end for New York — the beginning, as she puts it, of displacement for working-class New Yorkers as the city sought to save itself from further decline by ingratiating itself to the wealthy, here and abroad. Oligarchs didn’t just arrive on West 57th Street in 2013; they had, in fact, been systematically courted for a very long time.”


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