Have Blight; Will Redevelop

The Claremont Institute provides an in-depth case study of a redevelopment project in Southern California, and questions whether redevelopment was needed at all in this case.
November 24, 2004, 5am PST | Chris Steins | @urbaninsight
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"In 2000 the Agency and City Council again reviewed the question of blight in the Village. The Claremont City Council found that the Village was indeed blighted. This "finding" was made despite the fact that the Village remains a vibrant, active area where rents are so high that several local businesses went out of business. According to the Redevelopment Agency's staff, "The Claremont Village is one of the most successful small downtown areas in Southern California. Parking spaces are nearly full most hours of the day, even into the evening, and there are virtually no commercial and retail vacancies in the Village."

...The Agency seeks to create additional space for new businesses that want to open in the Village but does not answer the question of whether this includes large chain stores. The new Village would also provide larger retail spaces for businesses that want to expand. But if the demand is there, do the businesses need the Agency to grow? Thus, it is possible for the Agency to change radically the character of the Village, in defiance of public opinion."

Thanks to Ken Masugi

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Published on Thursday, November 18, 2004 in The Claremont Institute
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