We are so excited for the Fall edition of the 540WMain Gentrification Conference. The spring edition was such a success that your feedback initiated planning for a fall edition. The fall conference has been expanded to a full day, will feature real life community stories, and have community led small group breakouts. We’ve put together details below so everyone can know what to expect for this Saturday. We look forward to making the spring and fall gentrification conferences bi-annual events in coming years.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)
What is the 540WMain (Fall ) Gentrification Conference?
The 540WMain Gentrification (Fall) Conference is a community led conference that has a goal to facilitate positive conversation and action around making Rochester accessible to all persons. The conference has a fee of $6 but no one will be turned away. We have a roster (released tomorrow) of amazing corporate sponsors that have made it possible to set aside multiple complimentary seats so that the conference is accessible to all. Proceeds will support the respective missions and work of 540WMain Communiversity & City Roots Community Land Trust
Who Are The Gentrified?
The theme for the fall edition is “Who are the gentrified”. The entire day will be centered around the testimonials of three community members that have been personally displaced or negatively impacted by City development and gentrification. These accounts will humanize the concept of gentrification and show the real effects of development that displaces and fails to engage community members that live in developing neighborhoods. The three community member featured panelists include:
- Liz MicGriff, homeowner in the Beechwood neighborhood
- Mohamed Gazali, member of the board of directors for City Roots Community Land Trust
- Jody Francis, member of the Rochester Tenant Union
To learn more about their stories listen to a recent airing of the WXXI radio program Connections w/ Evan Dawson http://www.wxxinews.org/post/connections-who-affected-gentrification
How do we promote inner city development without the displacement of our most vulnerable community neighbors?
The conference will be facilitated by 540WMain Founder Calvin Eaton and Shane Weigand of the City Roots Community Landtrust ( who also serve as the conference co-founders) through community led panel discussions, lecture, and small group break out sessions; participants will be encouraged to unpack, expand their thinking, expand stereotypes and share ideas on how to promote development without displacement collectively and individually.
Do I have to Stay the Whole Day?
No. Community members can attend for all or part of the day. The program will officially begin at around 10:30 AM and break for lunch at 12 PM. A more detailed schedule will be released on Friday October 19th.
Will Food Be Provided?
Healthy snacks, water, refreshments and a light lunch will be provided for the day. Attention will be given to vegan, gluten free, and low calorie alternatives. Those with more severe dietary restrictions are encouraged to bring their own lunch for the day.
How do I Prepare for the Conference?
The Fall conference will be centered around two books.
- How to Kill a City: Gentrification, Inequality, and the Fight for the Neighborhood by Peter Moskowitz
Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond
Community members are encouraged to engage with all or part of the recommended texts as well as bring:
- an open mind
- business cards
- *lunch and/snacks & water
We recommend that you reading the following resources prior to attending the conference.
- Rent strike: Living with rats and raw sewage, Thurston Road tenants demand apartment fixes: https://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/news/2018/02/20/rent-strike-living-roaches-rats-and-raw-sewage-tenants-demand-apartment-fixes/355339002/
Anxiety and hope as city moves on major West Main land buy: https://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/news/2018/10/15/anxiety-and-hope-city-moves-major-west-main-land-buy/1581398002/?fbclid=IwAR0fTcFiZfdHEQUN2ngcr582JP0LPAdNAAuKygsxCnDHZhkisiO4fsSrKk4
- What If Gentrification Was About Healing Communities Instead of Displacing Them: https://www.ted.com/talks/liz_ogbu_what_if_gentrification_was_about_healing_communities_instead_of_displacing_them?language=en&fbclid=IwAR0tBrQtg8YJHYNQeHyKV7VLVDQDEC-BuUYaggpHyOf9uN1VOR90E7uaCoo#t-3945
- Can Art Cause Gentrification: https://medium.com/@catmcgloin/can-art-cause-gentrification-e947806f5291?fbclid=IwAR0xeQHKzdCFCV9fUjx7hoZnRUJY2pFyDDp95FEzHI_Zv3H-5991v4LKNi0
- Thurston Road landlord’s companies have hundreds of code violations, as tenants start rent strike:https://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/news/2018/03/02/thurston-road-landlords-companies-have-hundreds-code-violations-tenants-start-rent-strike/384501002/
- Rochester tenants seek housing court to iron out apartment issues: https://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/news/2018/01/08/rochester-tenants-seek-housing-court-iron-out-apartment-issues/1012582001/
The Ryan Community Center (500 Webster Ave) location is accessible to all. We will have team ASL interpreters free of charge at the conference for Deaf and hearing impaired community members.