Boston Chinatown is both a residential, working class neighborhood and the social, cultural, political, and economic center of the broader Chinese community of New England.
Chinatown’s land base has eroded for 50 years, housing is overcrowded, traffic is gridlocked, and its future is threatened by overdevelopment and gentrification. In 2013, the number of luxury units in Chinatown and the surrounding area is set to triple.
To ensure Chinatown’s future as the social, political, economic, and cultural center for the Chinese community, the Chinatown Stabilization Campaign is focused on stabilizing the working class residential core of Chinatown as the neighborhood grows and diversifies. We seek to strengthen the voice of ordinary Chinatown residents in order to unite and lead the broader community in determining Chinatown’s future.
- Tenant organizing to keep people in their homes and community.
- Working for community-driven planning and development.
- Coalition-building for policies that stabilize working class neighborhoods and reclaim our right to the city.
We helped bring citywide attention to the “affordability gap” in affordable housing and retarget the Inclusionary Zoning program to serve Boston residents. We worked with tenants in ten Chinatown developments, totaling 700 units, to help them stay in their homes and improve their quality of life.
We helped to establish Chinatown’s first resident association, which went on to win city government recognition as an advisory “neighborhood council” and increased affordable housing concessions through high-profile organizing campaigns.
In 2001, our youth program started the campaign to restore the Boston Chinatown Branch Library, which was destroyed in 1956 during the process of constructing Interstate 93. CPA has continued to support the Chinatown Lantern Committee’s efforts for a library. The Chinese Youth Intiative have produced a video to educate and inform the public about the campaign for a Chinatown Library.
We also work with the Boston Jobs Coalition to ensure that residents have access to good construction and permanent jobs created by development in the community.
We work to:
- preserve the working class, family neighborhood
- unite residents and ordinary community members around a vision for Chinatown’s future
- build residents’ grassroots organizing capacity and political mechanisms to change the community’s balance of power
- develop new community leadership which stands for the interests of the majority
- organize for greater community control of development and for Chinatown’s growth
- educate and organize residents for a healthy urban environment