Publication: Chicana Neighborhood Activism: Gender, Race, and Urban Planning
This article weaves the activist narrative stories of three Chicana neighborhood leaders that have transformed redevelopment projects in their barrios to gain more community benefits. Chicanas pressured the city, redevelopment agency staff, politicians, and developers to transform market-based redevelopment housing projects into affordable housing. These projects encouraged links to social and educational services, supported locally owned retail, and built Chicano/a culturally appropriate public spaces. In particular, we analyze how these Chicana neighborhood activists were influenced by the Chicano/a movement; how they became involved in urban planning issues; and finally, how each transit-oriented project changed to encompass more community benefits as these Chicanas pressured the city and developers. The projects include Fruitvale’s Transit Village in Oakland, California, the expansion of East LA’s Goldline in Los Angeles, California, and the transformation of El Mercado Del Barrio redevelopment in San Diego, California. The narrative stories help to conceptually and empirically ground the larger structural barriers that create inequitable and racially segregated neighborhoods and demonstrate how Chicana activists challenged and pushed back against those structures to protect their barrios.
Activism, gentrification, gender, neighborhood revitalization