Rezoning Leads to Displacement

New York City was a place that allowed for immigrants to have opportunities to live and work in freedom, but now, because of gentrification, these freedoms are being taken away.  Having a place to love provides a feeling of “agency, freedom, and security” (Stabrowski 814). The freedom to live where you want also allows for a sense of belonging. Polish people who lived in Greenpoint lived there because it was somewhere they could afford but also because it was a place where they would be surrounded with people like them and people they know. As the area got rezones, “American” people wanted to move in. This made the Polish people of Greenpoint uncomfortable. Before, they rented apartments to people they knew and trusted, but then they were forced to rent to and live with people whose culture they didn’t understand and who they were not able to communicate well with.

Rezoning causes living prices to raise and people to be displaced as richer people move in. Those originally living there are forced to live in new places where they may not know anybody and do not feel comfortable living in. They are forced to move away from their homes where they feel secure. It’s no secret to residents that when rezoning plans are put into place, displacement will follow. In the South Bronx, rezoning plans are being made, and the people who love there are afraid of what will happen to them.

This video describes what is occurring in the Bronx. As local residents hear of new rezoning plans, they fear what will happen to them. A local resident believes if rezoning occurs his “life will change 100 percent.” These feelings of insecurity have led residents to organize protests to protect their freedom. Let’s hope this time the protests are successful and the people will be able to continue feeling secure about where they live.

Rezoning Protest in the Bronx

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