20 Aug 2014
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Silver Spring a Model for Economic Stimulus Without Gentrification

George Washington University School of Business study recognizes Silver Spring diversity along with economic returns.

How do you revitalize a neighborhood while retaining its ethnic diversity and character? Just take a look at downtown Silver Spring, a new study suggests.

In “DC: The Walk Up Wake Up Call,” a report by Christopher B. Leinberger of the George Washington University School of Business, Silver Spring received the highest ranking for its “social equity.” Notably, a high level of diversity and a relatively low level of change in the racial makeup between 2000 and 2010, although Silver Spring’s white population did grow during that time as the black population declined, the study said. 

More from the study: 

An important Copper example is Silver Spring, especially when viewed with its social equity ranking (Platinum, the highest). Silver Spring walks the tightrope in attempting to achieve higher economic returns without gentrifying and detracting from its unique and diverse character.

Leinberger’s study took many suburbs and neighborhoods in Washington, DC, and ranked their social performance (things like diversity) and their economic performance (things like unemployment). Overall, he found that walkable neighborhoods represent the future of real estate, not just a niche market. The study notes the DC area as a pioneer in walkable urban places.

Wheaton, Rosslyn, VA, and Courthouse in Arlington, VA, also were noted for high social equity.

Read the entire study here

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