Environment and Energy, Features, Law and Politics, New York

NYC Comptroller: Local Residents Left Behind in Gentrifying Neighborhoods

August 6, 2018

By Stephanie West

NEW YORK, N.Y. — Amid explosive economic growth across New York City, Comptroller Scott M. Stringer has released an updated 2018 edition of his “Neighborhood Economic Profiles” report finding that local residents in gentrifying neighborhoods are largely being left out of the recent economic expansion.

“The economic growth in our neighborhoods is good news, but only if it means real opportunities for the working families, seniors, and immigrants who built these communities in the first place. This report clearly shows that local residents are getting left behind as already struggling New Yorkers are finding it harder than ever to afford living here,” said New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer. “We need to fully fund workforce development programs, build community partnerships, and prepare local residents with the necessary skills and training so that they can thrive in their growing neighborhood economies.”

In the 24 neighborhoods identified as “gentrifying” in the report, local employment jumped by an average of 24 percent, nearly triple the growth rates in “low-rent, non-gentrifying areas” and far outpacing those in “high rent neighborhoods.” The fastest growth was found in Claremont-Bathgate in the Bronx, Williamsburg and Crown Heights South in Brooklyn, and Central Harlem South in Manhattan, where the number of jobs rose by over 40 percent since 2010.

High levels of job growth, especially for young employees and those in higher wage jobs, exemplify why gentrifying neighborhoods should be spaces of economic opportunity for local residents. However, the analysis found that new jobs often failed to reach local residents of color who make up the vast majority of both residents and job seekers. Additionally, these wide disparities in job outcomes suggest that gentrification may have a stronger effect on the labor market than the residential market.

August 6, 2018

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