GentriWatch: Scenes from a Gentrifying Dorchester

Plus, last call for the Williams Tavern and My Diner.

Welcome to GentriWatch, where we look for signs of gentrification happening around the city.

Photo by John Daley on Flickr/Creative Commons

Photo by John Daley on Flickr/Creative Commons

Too often, the debate over Boston’s housing crisis has a dehumanizing effect. Amidst all the urban planning lingo—Inclusionary Development Policy, no-fault evictions, IMP, RFP, CPA—it’s easy to forget what we’re actually talking about. Longtime residents of our neighborhoods are increasingly finding themselves unable to remain in their homes for a variety of reasons, chief among them skyrocketing rents and a shortage of affordable housing.

The Dorchester Reporter launched the first part of a series on gentrification in the neighborhood, and it’s a candid, heart-wrenching look at its emotional toll.

“I like to be stable,” Sandra Teixeira told the Reporter. Since receiving a no-fault eviction, she’s finding it exceedingly difficult to find an affordable place to raise her son. “I have an eleven-year-old, he’s been in the same school four years, he might have to move. I’m not a young girl. For me to go out and work I have to have a home because home is a place of peace, a place of comfort, a place to recharge my batteries. Without that, it’s like another vicious cycle going around.”

Another Dot resident detailed how a new landlord let his building fall into disrepair, awash with garbage and crime. But due to the lack of affordable options elsewhere, residents were reluctant to hold the landlord accountable, for fear of retaliation—i.e., evictions.

You can read the Reporter‘s full story here.

• • •

Things aren’t looking good for Williams Tavern and My Diner.

The city’s Zoning Board of Appeals approved plans Tuesday for luxury condos in the space currently occupied by the two longtime South Boston businesses at 100 A Street, Universal Hub reports. While developer Michael Moor’s attorney, David Murray, says his client will offer space in the six-story, nine-unit condo building’s first floor for My Diner, the decade-old restaurant may look to move elsewhere.

Notice something changing in your neighborhood? Let me know:, @KyleClauss.