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High-rises price out the middle

By June 26, 2006


Seattle Times, High-rises price out the middle:

I like the idea of an army of spit-shine new residents invading downtown. It’s fewer cars on the road, a nod to our healthy economy and hints at the world-class city we’ve always wanted to be.

But I don’t see any place for the middle class. Any firefighter, teacher or store manager (we’re what the city calls its “work force”) will have to borrow a jacket to be seated.

My salary probably puts me in the upper middle class category and I’m finding pricing for the new projects downtown out of my reach. While I will be able to afford something the city and its developers need to do some about the inevitable stratification problem we’re facing, sooner rather than later. It’s one thing for the rich the to be able to eschew their Porsches so that they can walk to work and it’s another for everyone else to have to live in Renton/Kent/Lynnwood and have to commute into Seattle in order to provide these urban dwellers with services.

Also see today’s New York Times article, Income Inequality, and Its Cost:

INEQUALITY has always been part of the American economy, but the gap between the rich and the poor has recently been widening at an alarming rate. Today, more than 40 percent of total income is going to the wealthiest 10 percent, their biggest share of the nation’s pie in at least 65 years.

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