Push for Land Trusts to Slow Gentrification High School Students Lobby Pittsburgh Council
PITTSBURGH (Newsradio 1020 KDKA) – A group of young people in the city of Pittsburgh wants City Council to step up spending on community land trusts. The idea is to slow the pace of gentrification and displacement of older, poorer residents.
“Pittsburgh is the 8th most gentrified city in the United States,” according to 11th grader Bana Almoussa who researched gentrification for council’s Youth Participatory Budget. Almoussa, who attends Pittsburgh Science and Technology Academy, says, “In Pittsburgh, overall there was a 20 percent increase in home values.”
Community land trusts are non-profits that buy properties and then resell or rent to qualifying residents at affordable prices. Lawrenceville already has a land trust. Several other neighborhoods are looking at the idea.
“Areas that have community land trusts have more stability of income, stalling a decrease in affordability, ensuring that renters can keep their homes,” says Science and Technology 10th grader Amira Johnson.
The group wants council to spend $125,000 in next year’s budget to seed land trust projects that would be managed by the city’s Urban Redevelopment Authority.