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Gentrification is a process of displacement of marginalized or lower-class communities to make room for more affluent communities. While gentrification affects many areas of life, such as price of rent and the job market, this research focuses on small business and the effects gentrification has on them. Small businesses on Main Street and the surrounding downtown in Binghamton, NY will be defined and their role in the community will be explored. This research seeks to understand the latest developments in those areas. In the last six years the area has seen a large boom in new small businesses, giving the area a “fresh look”. The area has been made more walkable, removing businesses or landmarks that could be considered “eye sores” or unsavory such as sex stores or dive bars. To address the relationship between small businesses and gentrification, interviews and surveys will be conducted. The interviews will include business owners, consumers and different members of different religious and racial communities, making sure to interview people from lower income communities assumed to be most affected. Surveys will be passed out to participating businesses to distribute to customers. Street surveys will also be conducted both on Main Street and downtown. Street survey questions will be broader pertaining to the area while the store surveys will be geared more towards the specific store and the relationship the customer has with the store. This research will provide insight on the relationship between small businesses and gentrification.



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The Relationship Between Small Businesses and Gentrification