Loose Lips has gotten loose with reality. In the recent “Green Lined” piece (9/24), LL laid out the dispute over the redevelopment of Columbia Heights.
LL makes some pretty wacky statements, including claims that black people—who rent because, goodness knows, no black people own anything—living in Columbia Heights oppose redevelopment of the entire site since it would drive up rent.
My question: Who wants to rent near abandoned land rough with construction rubble? And does LL suggest that the city’s policy should be not to redevelop abandoned property to keep land values down? Hell, why do anything in Columbia Heights? Let the Tivoli fall down around the new Metro—and keep the area affordable.
Gentrification is a serious issue, especially in a place as racially divided as Washington. I can’t think of anything more important to community redevelopment than coherent strategies to protect low- and moderate-income housing. But half-assed redevelopment in Columbia Heights doesn’t seem like a good way.