Happy Fifty Years, Gentrification!

... Does Gentrification Gentrify Without Gentrifiers?
by Javier Arbona
Gentrification doesn't need to be something that one group inflicts on another; often it's the result of aspirations everybody shares. All over the city, a small army of the earnest toils away, patiently trying to sluice some of the elitist taint off neighborhoods as they grow richer. When you're trying to make a poor neighborhood into a nicer place to live, the prospect of turning it into a racially and economically mixed area with ­thriving stores is not a threat but a fantasy. As the cost of basic city life keeps rising, it's more important than ever to reclaim a form of urban improvement from its malignant offshoots. A nice neighborhood should be not a luxury but an urban right. – Justin Davidson, 2014

Democratic Commissioning for Urban Renewal

by Joe Penny

Most people wouldn’t call public-service commissioning exciting, if they even know it exists. Commissioning is the process of coordinating financial support based on assessment of local needs, aspirations and assets. It includes processes of contracting, procurement and outsourcing. It sounds dry and remote from our daily lives, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.