Defend Affordable Ypsi is a volunteer-run coalition of residents in Ypsilanti, Michigan, working together to heighten awareness around issues of gentrification locally, and strategize how to combat gentrification in our community effectively.
Defend Affordable Ypsi and residents of Ypsilanti are facing an uphill battle with a development proposal for Ypsi's largest parcel of city-owned land known as Water St. The proposed development called, International Village, promises 300+ million dollars of investment in Water St, in the interest of building luxury student housing and condos aimed toward international students . There are a host of concerns with this proposal—including ethics violations on the part of city officials, EB-5 investment scheme, lack of transparency of the process, the privatization of public land without broad community buy-in, issues of housing insecurity and rising rents not being addressed, entering a purchase agreement without claw-back measures, and the many impacts this development will have on Ypsilanti.
To effectively meet this challenge, DAY will have to raise funds to offset print costs for getting the word out to the residents of Ypsilanti as soon as possible. DAY will also need to raise funds for FOIA requests, legal support, and a zine publication to further heighten awareness and bring vital information to the public.
The timeline is pressing: DAY hopes to have a zine published by the end of October, and will need to direct capital toward our work to challenge International Village—which is set to be voted on by December of 2017.
DAY is a community effort, by and for the people of Ypsilanti, in an attempt find alternatives to systems of gentrification, and protect it's current residents. Your support for DAY would mean that the people of Ypsilanti will be more informed on the issues we face, and help our chance to challenge the powerful interests of city officials and the International Village developers.
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