News, Column: They wanted to save Leimert Park from gentrification. Here’s how they got one block : detailed suggestions and opinions about Column: They wanted to save Leimert Park from gentrification. Here’s how they got one block .
As it turns out, nothing about buying back the ’hood to build generational wealth and manage gentrification — as the late rapper Nipsey Hussle so famously encouraged his fans to do — is easy when you’re Black.
Not even buying one small corner of it.
For about a year, I’ve been following the travails of Akil West, a Black business owner with dreams of purchasing, co-op-style, a small commercial building on Degnan Boulevard in the heart of rapidly gentrifying Leimert Park.
Though dilapidated, the building — home to West’s clothing store, Sole Folks, and several other Black-owned businesses, including Eso Won Books — is clearly valuable, mostly because of where it sits: at the center of Black life in Los Angeles.