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As 'white flight' comes to an end, policymakers and community leaders talk about what this means for American cities

Racial Balance Shifts as 'White Flight' Subsides [Real Player]

How Willie Kathryn Suggs Changed the Harlem Real-Estate Market

In Thousands of Images, a Photographer Builds a History in Harlem [Free registration may be required]

Older Cities Hold On to More People, Census Shows [pdf]

Reversing a fifty-year pattern, recent reports and Census data seem to indicate that the era of 'white flight' from large urban areas in the United States may be over. In a recent article from the Wall Street Journal it was reported that between 2000 and 2006 eight of the largest 50 cities (including Boston and San Francisco) saw their proportion of whites increase. The causes for this broad transformation are complex, but because so many whites left large cities in the previous decades, even modest gains in the white population results in significant increases. Also, African-Americans are continuing to move to the suburbs, and more Hispanics frequently bypass the city altogether due to rising real estate costs and lack of job opportunities in certain sectors. There are other interesting aspects related to this demographic change, including struggles over local cultural identity in neighborhoods that have been defined by African-American culture for decades, such as the Fillmore neighborhood in San Francisco and Harlem in New York. To address this issue, San Francisco's Mayor Gavin Newsom has convened an "African-American Out-Migration Task Force and Advisory Committee" to help retain black residents noting, "The city is experiencing growth, yet we're losing African-American families disproportionately. When that happens, we lose part of our soul."

The first link will take visitors to the aforementioned Wall Street Journal article, which was published this past Saturday. The second link will lead visitors to an interesting discussion from National Public Radio on the changing demographics of American cities. Participants on this program include Conor Dougherty, author of the Wall Street Journal article on 'white flight' and William Frey, demographer for the Brookings Institution. Moving on, the third link leads to an article on Harlem real estate maven, Willie Kathryn Suggs. She's part of the ongoing debate surrounding the gentrification in Harlem, and the piece is well worth a read. The fourth link leads to an excellent profile of Harlem photographer Alix Dejean from this Monday's New York Times. The fifth link will whisk users away to a report from the Brookings Institution from demographer William Frey which discusses the recent (and somewhat surprising) population gains made by older American cities. Finally, the last link leads to a website that tracks various symbols of gentrification (new housing developments, etc.) in Washington, D.C.
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