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RVADirt @RVAdirt
, 14 tweets, 8 min read Read on Twitter
This is a thread that is intended to show how important community involvement and advocacy is. People often speak about gentrification as if it is an inevitable conclusion to development but recent efforts by South Richmond community members tell a different story. #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
In March 2018, @StyleWeekly named Michael and Laura Hild “Best Revivalist Couple” in their Best of Richmond edition. #RVA
Following a May community meeting, on June 15th @__MarkRobinson reported on the expansion of Manchester Historic District. He states that investment following historic district designations often coincide w/ gentrification. #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
Another important fact in the 6/15 article is the Hilds contracted a company in Spring 2017 to begin work on the expansion so work has been underway on this expansion for at least a year. Community members were brought in May 2018 as part of DHR’s process. #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
On 6/18 @RTDMPW wrote about the necessity of relationships in rebuilding a community citing @BrewersCafeRVA’s success in business and community involvement. #RVA
MPW’s 6/18 article also cites an exchange b/w Hild and a resident who expressed their concerns. This is a shining example of the level of disconnect from the community of Richmond’s “best revivalists.” #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
In a follow up on 6/20, @__MarkRobinson writes about DHR’s decision to delay for 3 months and Hild’s response was to stop their $250M investment in South Richmond. A DHR employee is quoted as saying Hild didn’t see the benefit in community engagement. #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
The 6/20 also states the Hild’s self-reported 60-65 properties owned or under contract. Remember how they started this process in Spring 2017? And the DHR process doesn’t bring it to the community until after the app is submitted? So public hearing was May 2018? #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
That means they had the advantage of knowing they were pushing for the boundaries to be redrawn which would allow for people to take advantage of historic tax credits for over a year before it became public knowledge. #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
So while the Hild’s claim they aren’t developers, they have been able to buy properties that others haven’t been interested in (possibly due to the lack of historic tax credits) for cheap thinking this was going to get approved so they could use tax credits. #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
Clearly, they planned their purchases around this designation that others weren’t privy to and needed for this to pass because their timeline was so tight that a 3 month delay is apparently cause for them to stop $250M of development in the area. #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
So.... I put all of this in one lengthy tweet thread to say YOUR VOICE MATTERS. Get out there and get involved. Fight for your community and what you believe in. Some days are going to be hard but don’t think potential outcomes are always foregone conclusions. #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
Some amazing people in South Richmond including the strong, powerful @wonderfulmimixo have been able to use their voices to change the path of gentrification in their community. Even against this year’s “best revivalist”! #RVA 🧜🏻‍♀️
Keep fighting everyone. Keep standing up for what you believe in even if you think you’re alone. One voice can spark the wildfire of change. #RVA #RVAMayor #RVACouncil 🧜🏻‍♀️
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