AMNY: Brooklyn and Gentrification: Will Bed-Stuy feel the ‘Starbucks effect’ from new coffee shop?
by: Nicole Levy
The arrival of a neighborhood’s first Starbucks is often seen as a signal of imminent gentrification.
When news spread that the coffee giant would be planting its flag in Bedford-Stuyvesant, displacing part of the expansive discount department store Fat Albert, “there were mixed emotions,” said City Council member Robert Cornegy, who represents the 36th district. “The idea that they’ve been so closely associated with the negative tenets of gentrification sent a red flag up immediately in the community.
“When Starbucks shows up, it seems as if the trajectory of a community changes dramatically,” said Cornegy, who has seen the demographics of Bed-Stuy change significantly since 2001, when the 9/11 tragedy propelled a migration of lower Manhattan residents into Brooklyn housing along the J train. “I think people have that sentiment just seeing the brand.”
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