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Opinion

Opinion: Gentrification in L.A.: It’s cruel, and it’s inevitable

Gilbert Nunez, left, owner, of sandblasting company, talks to John Urquiza and other residents of a Highland Park apartment complex Marmion Royal,  picketing to block workers from sandblasting their courtyard.
Gilbert Nunez, left, owner, of sandblasting company, talks to John Urquiza and other residents of a Highland Park apartment complex Marmion Royal, picketing to block workers from sandblasting their courtyard.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: It is sad that hardworking Angelenos are losing their homes as a result of hedge funds and private equity firms buying and upgrading the buildings in which tenants have leased for years. (“Protesting tenants of a Highland Park apartment complex face a mass eviction,” Oct. 9)

Unfortunately, the tenants of the Highland Park apartment complex whose owners seek higher rents after upgrading the building have no rights and can only delay the inevitable. They can either pay the rent increases, move or be evicted.

Matthew D. Kerster, Gardena

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To the editor: Words matter. Why are the media perpetuating the term “gentrification,” which has become a pejorative? Why is it not “revitalization” or “rehabilitation” or “modernization”? 

Neighborhoods such as Highland Park were once middle class. Who turned them into slums? Why is it wrong to revitalize them? 

Stephany Yablow, North Hollywood

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To the editor: As part of the gentrification in Highland Park, The Times cites, North Figueroa Street is “stirring with trendy restaurants.” 

If gentrification drives low-income residents out of the neighborhood, where will the waiters, busboys, cooks and dishwashers who work in those restaurants live?

David E. Ross, Oak Park

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