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Gentrification, Displacement, and the Role of Public Investment


Scholarly interest in the relationship between public investments and residential displacement dates back to the 1970s and the aftermath of displacement related to urban renewal. A new wave of scholarship examines the relationship of gentrification and displacement to public investment in transit infrastructure. Scholarship has generally conflated gentrification and displacement; however this review argues for a clearer analytical distinction between the two. Although the displacement discussion in the U.S. began with the role of the public sector and now has returned to the same focus, it will be necessary to overcome methodological shortcomings to arrive at more definitive conclusions about the relationship.

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