Staff Editorial

Staff

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When bringing the word gentrification to the attention of those interviewed by The Student Voice, they often seemed very confused. Many people we spoke to had no idea that the West Side of Jersey City is in the process of being gentrified.  

Gentrification is the process of redeveloping an area that has become a place for crime and where people allow their properties to become run down. The main concern we have is where people will go if they can’t afford their rent.

The future image of the redevelopment is pleasant and could be a great change for the area. There are many concerns about awareness for those who may be affected. Landlords are kicking residents out of their homes without prior notice that rent is increasing, and if they can’t afford it they will have to leave. The idea of redevelopment isn’t wrong, but the way it’s being done isn’t appreciated by many.

Coach C couldn’t have said it better, “One thing that is constant is change.” Change can benefit a community by providing residents with nice luxury houses, shopping centers and new businesses; however, those changes can be the cause of people being kicked out of their homes. The changes should be for everyone to enjoy and experience instead of just a selected group of people with immense income.

However, this should not be called gentrification, but rather neighborhood invasion. People are living comfortably in their homes with families, and maybe it’s already hard for them to pay bills, and then someone comes in and says, “you’re out by Tuesday or the rent will go higher.” If the area is going to be made better, it should be made better for all people and not just people who have a high income.

The greatest preparation for the redevelopment is knowledge because waiting until it affects you personally can be too late. People need to have a plan for the worst. The process can happen very quickly and people need to know before they are homeless. That is why the Student Voice has put in the time over the last few months to interview people on the city council, individuals involved in the redevelopment, and members of the community so that we can help people know what changes are coming to the West Side.

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