San Francisco's Crisis of Affluence

The booming tech industry has brought economic development to the Bay Area. But lavish lifestyles, astronomical housing prices, and rising evictions has put the industry in the crosshairs of a very public backlash. Can the city broker peace?
torbakhopper / flickr

"Resentment simmers [in San Francisco], at the fleets of Google buses that ferry workers to the company’s headquarters in Mountain View and back; the code jockeys who crowd elite coffeehouses, heads buried in their laptops; and the sleek black Uber cars that whisk hipsters from bar to bar," write Erica Goode and Claire Cain Miller. 

"For critics, such sights are symbols of a city in danger of losing its diversity — one that artists, families and middle-class workers can no longer afford. On the day of Twitter’s public offering this month, 150 demonstrators protested outside the company with signs reading 'People not profit' and 'We’re the public, what are you offering?'”

“There has to be some kind of public support to make sure you don’t just have a city of the very wealthy, but people to make the city run,” said Kevin Starr, professor of history and policy, planning and development at the University of Southern California.

“You can’t have a city of just rich people,” he said. 

Full Story: Backlash by the Bay: Tech Riches Alter a City

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