Gentrification (k)NOT Movie

It is time to define the term gentrification.

This (47 minute) documentary movie explores the meaning of the term gentrification and how it functions as an element of a system that displaces people from their communities during  the revitalization of an urban neighborhood.

First, we noticed there was confusion about what the word gentrification means, so we asked, How do you define the term gentrification?

It is time to make a distinction between gentrification and  revitalization.

In the Gentrification (k)NOT Movie, artists, academics, ministers, politicians and everyday people present their views about neighborhoods in flux and possibilities for change.




Then we asked ourselves and others, How can we revitalize, change and grow without pushing people out of their neighborhoods?

It is time to be honest. Careless revitalization generates gentrification.

Although gentrification is a global, national and local issue, the G(k) Movie focuses on a particular neighborhood in Baltimore Maryland, USA known as Station North.


One Model when Designing Revitalization:

“Revitalization without gentrification is hard work.” — Jamal Mudbi-Bey

Why Station North?


Station North is one of three areas in Baltimore City designated as an arts district. Station North includes the area between Howard St. and Greenmount Ave., south of 20th St. and north of the train tracks coming in and out of Penn Station. It is one of many urban areas throughout the world in the midst of revitalization.

As a designated arts district, we thought Station North would be a perfect location for bringing people together to interact, discuss and design how to prevent gentrification during revitalization.

The Gentrification (k)NOT Movie weaves footage from three Baltimore events into a  story about when is (k)NOT Gentrification.

montage– The 10th Anniversary party of Station North Arts and Entertainment District – 9/18/12
– WEAA radio show about gentrification and revitalization in Station North – 12/12/12
– A conference about Fair Development held at Sojourner Douglass College – 3/4/13

Available on DVD  

How do I – you – we – design revitalization without gentrification? When is fair and sustainable development?


We don’t have the answers. We do have ideas and at least one formula. We do want to provoke conversations about — when is (k)NOT Gentrification?



The Gentrification (k)NOT Movie is an outcome of the Gentrification (k)NOT Project and hopefully an input for conversing about solving complex problems.

When is an outcome an input? One response, when composing inputs.

Judith Lombardi, lcsw-c, phd

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6 Responses to

  1. Kalevi says:

    Wonderful blog! I found it while surfing around on Yahoo News.
    Do you have any suggestions on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
    I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there!
    Appreciate it

  2. Susan says:

    Very thought provoking–idea of “designing revitalization without gentrification”. I greatly appreciated the Brun essay, especially the concept of number of freedoms in this context. Great job. I need to see the full dvd–will try to spread the around the “other Portland”, (Maine).

  3. Gentrification helps the community especially when the neighborhood is run down, just think who
    wants to look at blight, low income people can adapt to this change if they are willing to be a
    part of the revitalization, and except change for the betterment of the community, anyway it’s
    just a matter of time if the building aren’t keep up they will fall down!

    • genknot says:

      From our starting point by definition, when in 1964 Ruth Glass coined the term, gentrification = displacement of people from their neighborhoods. However revitalization without gentrification is something that can be fantastic for a community. Maybe we do need a new word for the dynamic that emerges when revitalization of a neighborhood does not generate gentrification.

      It is not a matter of accepting change rather it is a matter of being a participant in deciding the future of one’s community.

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