My neighborhood does not have an Architectural Review Committee. Beyond City Codes, there are no restrictions to how these historic houses are redone. This has caused a different type of gentrification than in other parts of Richmond. In most of the gentrified neighborhoods, people were pushed out by raising the bar higher than the current inhabitants could afford. Our neighborhood has allowed for more budget-friendly flips, and, to this date, has really only affected vacant homes or homes vacated by elderly residents.
Designating historic zones has positive and negative effects. As with most “solutions” to a problem, there will always be unforeseen externalities. So, is there a better solution to esthetically revitalising neighborhoods without using these districts?
The article, below, from Richmond’s Style Weekly, examines a neighborhood on the brink of becoming historically designated and, subsequently, changing: