New York’s housing problems in the 19th century was the result of a mix of factors such as increased immigration, rising rents and shortage of affordable housing supply. The sudden influx in the city’s population led to emergence of tenements in the 1840s and 50s, built specifically to accommodate large numbers of low-income people. Tenements soon became the dominant form of working class housing.
Recognized for its profitability, tenements began to emerge in increasing numbers. This can be explained by the emergent form of developer practice brought about by industrialization which Engels describes in “The Great Towns”, where he sheds light on the commodification of housing in working class districts in Manchester – “the industrial epoch allows owners to rent [housing] for high prices to human beings, to plunder the poverty of the workers, to undermine the health of thousands in order that they alone, the owners may grow rich…Wherever a nook or corner was free, a house has been run up; where a superfluous passage remained, it has been built up…without reference to the health or comfort of the inhabitants, with sole reference to the highest possible profit on the principle that no hole is so bad but that some poor creature must take it who can pay for nothing better.” This sentiment was similarly echoed by Jacob Riis in How the Other Half Lives, “more than one-half of the tenements with two-thirds of their population were held by owners who made the keeping of them a
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysGet Access
As the problem of overcrowding became more and more evident, several remedies were tried. There was some individual philanthropy, model dwellings were built by "philanthropic capitalists," legislation was passed prohibiting overcrowding, slums were torn down(which, of course, only worsened the problem by displacing more people), there was suburban speculative development closely following the development of the railroad which provided cheap, rapid transit to the newly-forming
The purpose for writing this essay is to demonstrate how gentrification is shaping the Culture and identity for Halrmites from the socio-economic perspective. Harlem has changed dramatically over the last two decades due to improvement in housing stock and outside investments into the community. However, in my essay, I articulated my ideas toward the economic aspect of gentrification because gentrification is driven by class, not race. My audience would be the lower income Harlem residents who have been displaced or on the verge of displacement because their wealth is not contributing to the economy. The people who have been preserving the cultural identity of Harlem for decades now forced to leave the community. I tried my best to connect a broader audience by explaining the deteriorated housing condition of Harlem and how it led to gentrification. This will help reader
Riis covers many aspects of the poverty that has stricken the tenement lodgers but when talking about one end of the spectrum (poor) you also need to discuss the other (rich). With out telling people how the other half of the other half lives he’s leaving out a crucial part of how people live in New York. By avoiding, that topic he’s giving the illusion that all people in New York live in such cramped housing as tenements. When in reality New York was and is presently not composed of strictly tenement housing. There was a ‘rich’ part of town where the thought of not having any money was never even contemplated. In addition, where the industrial revolution only touched higher societies on positive outcomes such as economics the industrial revolution only made it harder for the immigrants to get ahead. By this, meaning, that they worked harder, got paid little to nothing, and still had to compensate for the short comings that where being pressed against them because they were in fact immigrants.
Most contracts never mentioned the safety and comfort of tenants (p. 10). In addition, many of the tenants were working and needed to be close to where they worked. The costs of living in these tenement houses were ridiculously high for the condition and size of the rooms.
On May 3rd when I visited the site where the Norman Blumberg Housing Project once stood, the air was hauntingly peaceful. I had read about the notoriety of the site during my research, how over its existence it had become an area of concentrated poverty and crime, but on this day this urban setting was quiet and calm. On the two square city blocks where a complex of apartment buildings once ruled the landscape, only a single high-rise remained among the unchecked wild grass. However, even in the peacefulness of this day in Sharswood, the looming presence of the infamous Norman Blumberg Apartments could still be felt.
Tenement buildings are run down buildings, mostly in the city. Poor families and mostly poor immigrants would live inside these buildings. Tenement buildings were very unhealthy to live in. A danger that families had to face in these buildings was that they were run down. Run down buildings could fall apart and the ceilings could be tore. Also, the buildings could have mold and people can get sick from breathing in mold, laying on mold, or ingesting mold. Tenements were also small and crowded with people, so if someone gets sick in the tenement it will spread very fast to the whole family. Tenement buildings are also very unsanitary. There were outhouses outside the buildings and these outhouses would stink up the neighborhood. Outhouses are unsanitary because the waste inside them would be stuck inside them for a long time and that can attract bugs. Furthermore, outside these tenements in the backyard, were mud and animal feces all over the place. Along with the mud and animal waste children would try to play outside but, it would be to dirty for them to go outside and play. Fires were one of the many dangers that people in tenement buildings had to face. If there was a fire it would be hard for tenement residents to evacuate the building because there was no fire escapes. Likewise, tenements residents could also have fire hazards like cigarettes or
Today's world is filled with both great tragedy and abundant joy. In a densely populated metropolis like New York City, on a quick walk down a street you encounter homeless people walking among the most prosperous. Unfortunately, nine times out of ten the prosperous person will trudge straight past the one in need without a second thought. A serious problem arises when this happens continually. The problem worsens when you enter a different neighborhood and the well-to-do are far from sight. Many neighborhoods are inhabited only by the most hopeless of poverty - ridden people while others downtown or across the park do not care, or are glad to be separated from them. Such is the problem in New York City today and in Mott Haven in Jonathan
In the nineteenth century, families of all different kinds of races resided in tenements. The tenements I will be writing about are located on 96 Orchard Street in the lower east side of New York City. Every room tells a remarkable story of the lives
Affordable housing has become the paramount issue of cities and dense urban areas. San Francisco is the posterchild of an unaffordable city that regardless of immense investment from blue chip firms like Google, Facebook, and their ilk of startups evaluated at $1 billion or more, policymakers and elected officials must wrestle with the housing affordability crisis that is considered endogenous to swaths of homelessness and record statistics on crime. In New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio has made affordable housing the centerpiece of his legislation and championed the cause as a social justice issue—neighborhoods must remain affordable to maintain diversity for all races, ethnicities, and low-income families. A small sample of 827 New Yorkers by the NY1-Baruch College City Poll found the main concern of respondents was affordable housing while crime, jobs, and homelessness were peripheral problems (Cuza, 2016). The public discourse on how to address housing across the United States has pointed to negative externalities that surround rent-regulation and homeownership. Conversely, for this essay I will present various cases in order to illustrate the housing crunch is influenced less by housing and land regulations, or antagonistic homeowners but is induced by global market forces.
The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) is the “largest public housing authority in the nation” (Developments, 2015). In existence since 1934 (About NYCHA: NYCHA at 70, 2015), NYCHA is a low to moderate income public housing initiative consisting of 328 developments throughout all five boroughs of New York City. More than 400,000 residents benefit from these developments through the receipt of not only apartments but additional services provided by each development and New York City overall. Over recent years the NYCHA developments have been experiencing a reduction in government funding, forcing the organization to re-evaluate strategies addressing maintenance of old buildings (About NYCHA, 2015).
According to Newman and Wyly, Rapid gentriﬁcation has put incredible burden on low-income residents. Tenants, advocates, and community leaders have stated that displacement put much strain for the low-income, working class, elderly and immigrant communities of New York city. Community leaders report that residents often double- or triple-up with family and friends, become homeless or move into the city shelter system, or move out of the city.
The book The Classic Slum: Salford Life in the First Quarter of the Century by Robert Roberts gives an honest account of a village in Manchester in the first 25 years of the 20th century. The title is a reference to a description used by Friedrich Engels to describe the area in his book Conditions of the Working Class. The University of Manchester Press first published Roberts' book in the year 1971. The more recent publication by Penguin Books contains 254 pages, including the appendices. The author gives a firsthand description of the extreme poverty that gripped the area in which he grew up. His unique perspective allows him to accurately describe the self-imposed caste system, the causes and effects of widespread poverty, and the
In order to understand why developers targeted Harlem for gentrification, it is crucial to discuss the causes of gentrification. As the time has progressed people’s preference have changed. The inclination toward fewer children, higher divorce rate, women in the workforce and the postponement of marriage have encouraged people to settle in urban neighborhoods. Young women’s participation in the professional
By the 1960s many of these urban areas, with the loss of capital, jobs, and so on; began to deteriorate, and property values fell. Currently with the higher costs of property in the suburbs and other communities, there are fewer and fewer opportunities to invest small and gain a big profit; thus, making the once "undesirable" urban properties with their low property values and costs, more "desirable."