GVSU Magazine, the Westside, and Gentrification

Grand Rapids Institute for Information Democracy

Developers, whether they are private or public, always have an impact on neighborhoods no matter how much they try to hide it.

This is the case with a recent Grand Valley State University Magazine article, which depicted the impact that campus was having on the westside of Grand Rapids.

The article, entitled, West Side Story: Grand Valley Strengthens Connection to Neighbors Through Collaboration, paints a very one-sided picture of what the school’s impact has had on the lower westside since they first moved to that part of town beginning in 1988, when the Eberhard Center opened. 

The first person interviewed in the article is a student who was involved in a project called Civic Studio. Civic Studio has not been shy about exploring the history and contemporary dynamics that impact the westside of Grand Rapids, with a significant emphasis on gentrification. This writer has attended many forums on this…

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