Little Rock Residents Fight Displacement, Win Big

What happens when neighborhoods come together to fight displacement from a powerful and seemingly unstoppable political force?

They win.

Residents in the predominantly African-American neighborhoods of Central Little Rock were slated to lose their homes to the forces of the Little Rock Technology Park Authority, after their properties were determined to be a good location for development. The LRTPA, a group of powerful business and political leaders, ignored the residents when studying locations and a tax that had recently passed served to fund its construction. But when residents caught wind of the project, they formed a We Shall Not Be Moved Coalition to spread information and sway the public against the project.

In a Shelterforce article titled “The Whole City's Watching,” Ashley Bachelder and Neil Sealy wrote about the coalition's fight against the LRTPA. The ending was hopeful, yet  inconclusive: following public pressure, the LRTPA voted to study other locations before moving forward with development.

Well, on Oct. 23, the not-to-be-moved residents were awarded a big win. The LRTPA voted 4-3 to place the $22 million technology park in Little Rock's downtown, sparing hundreds of homes from demolition.

(H/T to Twitter follower Jake Coffey for sending us the update!)


Jodi Weinberger served as assistant editor of Shelterforce from 2013 to 2014.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.