Government Helps Rich People Find Homes
While most hard working lower- and middle-income families look upon their modest homes with a sense of pride, local government officials take a different view. A tidy but smaller family-occupied home is just an obstacle standing in the way of the preferred homeowner, who is wealthy and lives in a high-density, luxury condominium development.
Many of the situations documented in this report are the result of such attempts by cities to condemn homes to make way for upscale residences. Willowick, Ohio, plans to condemn 30 cottages along the shores of Lake Erie and replace them with luxury mansions and condominiums. Although the existing homes are not in actual disrepair, the City claims that they pose a health and safety threat because streets in the area are narrow and the sewers are outdated. Why fixing these problems requires bulldozing the whole neighborhood is a good question, one for which the nervous owners are seeking answers.
In Tempe, Arizona, the Pillow family is fighting to keep their home of 45 years, while the City wants to replace it with a newer, larger home. Shaker Heights, Ohio, will be trading its affordable housing in for luxury housing. The idea in all these projects is that working-class and middle-class residents move out (to wherever it is that such people move), and highly-taxable people who like to shop at the new upscale retail stores move in.
Sources: All of these situations are described in this report under their respective cities.