Tag Archives: Patrick Crouch

Evolution or gentrification: Do urban farms lead to higher rents?

This is a short editorial-type article on the relationship between urban agriculture, community gardens, and gentrification.  The author is a white urban farmer working in Detroit, critical of his own (potential) role in gentrification.  He draws links between gentrification and the shift from community gardens to urban for-profit farming, alongside increased white farmers and yuppies.  He makes some a somewhat vague distinction between gentrification and real community development, but the article doesn’t hinge on this difference.  He has practical suggestions and responses, which don’t solve gentrification, but at least self-consciously respond to it:

  1. Root your organization in social justice, (which for him meant changing hiring practices, decision-making, and developing partnerships)
  2. Learn about the history of food/farming/growing in the city you’re in, and work with that history
  3. Listen actively, take criticism graciously, don’t take credit for a bunch of good ideas, seek out established leaders/mentors
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