Wednesday, November 18

Warning: Rail Public Transit Is A Major Lever For The Rich To Get Upper Middle Class People To Help Them Gentrify Cities

Ho-lee crap.

It's the same. Thing.

"Transportation general manager Bob Boutilier said...
"The corridors are not up for debate"

-Karen Kleiss,

Not up for debate.

Just like ours in the early 2000's.

They were up for debate for a while (the early 1990's).


Once the "developers" of the world pushed and pushed and pushed to always be trusted as "correct" about land use nation-wide, and once St. Paul government officials placed all decision-making value on statements like this:

"...developer David Kent of Strathearn Heights said the LRT expansion will promote ... redevelopment .... '(this proposal) would spur my industry.'"
(emphasis mine)
-Karen Kleiss,

Then (2000's) the routing was no longer "up for debate."

Light rail was going to be routed down an already-developed street, no matter what the working-class people who had envisioned its "development" and done the developing thought.

This Edmonton case makes clear that rail transit is a MAJOR vehicle for "push the poor folks out of the city, because now rich folks consider the city fun and to have amenities and we want to turn every corner of it into a place that can maybe make money off somewhat-rich folks for other rich folks for a little while before it goes bust trying."

Just wanna let folks in other cities know that they might wanna consider "rail" a hot word for their neighborhoods before it's too late for them, like it's probably too late for folks in St. Paul.

If "folks" = you, please remember: You've got a LOT of upper-middle-class people aligned against you right now.

You've got a population that is as susceptible to phrases that make them think "green," true or not, as much of America has been susceptible to phrases that make them think "terrorism," true or not.

ALL it takes for the wealthy to align these people on their side is the general statements that "trains cause less pollution per person than buses" and "trains' high speed from one end to the other (due to not stopping every block) attract people to mass transit who otherwise would have driven."

Attracting those people to the side of considering the well-being of poorer people currently taking public transit and currently living & working along big streets is a big-ass uphill battle that will take all the time you can get.

(To justice-minded Minnesotans: I hope I'll see you at North Minneapolis ("Bottineau") light rail alignment/routing meetings! Sorry I can't find a link--I read about them in a newsletter on public transit but can't seem to find archives online.)

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