Sea Levels Are Rising In Miami, Turning Little Haiti Into Hot Property | AJ+

You can hear, you can smell culture. You can taste it. Culture for us is everything. Culture is identity. But that culture is under threat from
a new and growing phenomenon: climate gentrification. We’re in Little Haiti, or in Creole, “Ti Ayiti.” It’s a Miami neighborhood filled with
a thriving Haitian immigrant community and … rising property rates. Everyone who has property in Little Haiti,
they want to kick them out. This is my home. Little Haiti is one of the fastest gentrifying neighborhoods in the United States. And the climate crisis has a lot do with it. Experts expect Miami’s sea level to rise
more than a foot in just 25 years. We’re actually seeing the effects of climate change. We’re seeing tidal flooding on sunny days. We’re realizing that the seas are rising. The city’s famed beaches will eventually
be submerged at high tide. And Little Haiti sits on a ridge far above these properties. Suddenly somebody realized, “Oh wow … this seems
to be one of the highest elevated points in Miami.” Its location has made it a hotspot for development, and Haitians are being forced out. More than 30,000 Haitian immigrants live in Miami,
which has the largest population of Haitians in the U.S. Michel Bien-Aimé is one of them. He bought a house in Little Haiti 30 years ago. Now, it’s prime real estate. He’s received dozens of letters from realtors
offering to buy his property. That’s one. But this one, that’s the one that scare me. “Dear Mr. Bien-Aimé, It’s time for you to move.” They scared me because they told me that’s
the time for me to leave the property. This is my property. I don’t say I have for sale. So this is disrespect. I don’t like it. I don’t like it at all. No, no, no, no. They try to buy from us for cheap money,
and then they’re going to make big money. But I don’t want to sell the house. Michel chose not to respond to any of the letters,
and his case isn’t an isolated one. Neither is his immigration story. In the ‘70s and ’80s, there was a surge of immigrants from Haiti due to political unrest in the country. Little Haiti became their cultural stronghold, and now climate gentrification is threatening it. Climate gentrification in Miami is about the movement
of people towards the higher ground and the displacement of those who have historically lived and developed communities on that high ground. Miami Beach’s coveted oceanfront properties are
some of the most vulnerable in the country to sea level rise. Almost one-third of the area is expected
to see chronic flooding by 2045. This means that it would see flooding at least 26 times a year, or on average, once every other week. Miami is historically low lying, beautiful, built. It used to be swamp, and all the rich,
beautiful people wanted to live on the coast. And those communities of color
were displaced to the railroad tracks. About one-fifth of Miami-Dade County lies below 1 foot of elevation at high tide. Projections say that if the sea rises by just 2 feet, Miami would look like this. And with 6 feet of sea level rise, it would look like this. The heart of Little Haiti lies here, at almost 13 feet above sea level. The cost of a home in Little Haiti has gone up
because it’s on high ground. Because value’s up, they can’t afford to buy
in their communities anymore. The rate of that gentrification is now accelerating. In Miami, sea level rise is no longer hypothetical.
It’s happening now. The city already experiences increased flooding during high tides. So those neighborhoods at higher elevation
are more appealing to developers. And those areas are also some of the poorest. It is a reality that coping with climate change requires resources and many, many of us don’t have the resources. So in that sense, Florida is a microcosm of what all coastal counties,
cities, states are going to have to be facing. Climate gentrification hits communities like Little Haiti the hardest. Schiller Sanon-Jules was forced to shutter his once thriving
secondhand store after a dramatic rental hike. Our store used to be from there to where the awning is. So we had about 5,000 square feet. Our lease ended after five years, and the owners wanted us to pay $4,800 instead of $2,500 in order for us to renew the lease. Schiller opened up a stall at the Little Haiti Cultural Center
down the street from his old store. But the stall is small and his business has suffered. We still had a lot of stuff.
We had to throw away a lot of it. Our business just went down the drain. Two years later, Schiller has yet to open up
another store like the one he had. They’re gradually getting us out of here little by little because the rents are getting so expensive
and people cannot afford them anymore. The Haitians have been pushed out. And this was an identity for us as Haitians, a place where we felt like home. Tessa Painson runs a local organization helping
provide affordable homes for the Haitian community. Developments are coming in that are not inclusive
of the low-income residents of the area. And those new businesses do not create opportunities
for those who have been here forever, who’ve built this area to be able to remain a part of it. These big luxury commercial and residential projects
are contributing to gentrification in Little Haiti. We embrace our roots and innovate into the future. Technologies will advance, expanding our community
and our opportunity to thrive. This the promotional video for the billion-dollar Magic City Innovation District. The megaproject spans seven city blocks in the center of Little Haiti. The impact that it has is not just on the four corners that it occupies. The cost of living is going to increase blocks and blocks
around that new development Developers claim that no one has been displaced,
but the project includes thousands of luxury apartments. The average income for a Haitians in Miami is less than $25,000 per year. The other side of of climate gentrification is
increasing traffic, changing demographics. The small businesses that catered to the Haitian community. Now when you have less and less Haitians,
you will have less and less customers. And so that also brings down the businesses
and forces them to close down. Each closure leaves a scar on the existing community. And community members like François Alexandre
are leading efforts to maintain the essence of Little Haiti. The problem that I see with these big developments
is that they don’t fit, they don’t fit into a small residential neighborhood. Culture for us is everything. Culture is identity. Culture is also economics. The culture is important in terms of maintaining it
and maintaining it for generations to come. This is everything that we’re telling people to give up
and that they’ve worked for years to establish We don’t really care if you’re going to rebuild the family,
to rebuild a village where you’re going. All we know is that we need you to go. But Little Haiti residents are fighting further displacement. Dozens went to City Hall to speak out against
the latest megaproject, Eastside Ridge. If the city approves the application, the developer
would build more than 3,000 residential units, 5,000 parking spaces and
nearly 300,000 square feet of commercial space. It could displace hundreds of residents. The developer’s application hasn’t met many city requirements,
including community consultation. And so, the application has been deferred. Community groups realize they can’t stop development in Little Haiti. But they demand more affordable housing for residents. Tessa’s organization just unveiled a six-unit affordable housing complex. Together with the families that will soon be moving into this building, we are excited. And at the same time, we want to let everyone know
this is just a stepping stone. According to the organization, all of the apartments
will be occupied by members of the Haitian community. But they know many more are needed in order
to fight displacement and preserve Little Haiti. I am so happy that my family is going to be able to find, they actually get opportunity to move into affordable housing
in our community, Ti Ayiti. We can’t avoid change. Change is good. But change can be humane,
and change can be inclusive. And those communities where you’re going in as a large developer, those communities are not the enemy. These are people’s lives that you’re affecting.

100 Replies to “Sea Levels Are Rising In Miami, Turning Little Haiti Into Hot Property | AJ+

  1. If you don't want to be pushed out then own your property and stop renting. no one can force you to sell for residential development. if you lease than you run the risk of leaving. Don't complain when the landlord doesn't renew the lease.

  2. This is happening in Ft Myers Fla as well. I live in Dunbar, which is just East of downtown. The MLK Jr Blvd exit off I-75 runs through Dunbar straight into the middle of downtown. Any house or structure that is not up to code will be torn down within a 2 mile stretch and up to a half mile north and south of MLK Jr Blvd. They are calling this development the uptown river district. This project was started back in the early nineties when the city of Ft Myers took a six square blocks of homes and property to build the now vacant Boston Red Sox spring training stadium. But project was halted because of the housing market crash in 2007. The poor black residents of my Dunbar community are slowly being forced out further East of Ft Myers to Lehigh acres Fl. If this continue, the important history of Dunbar will be lost forever. Something must be done to stop this.

  3. What would be the point of moving there if the rest of the city is flooded? If anything,they should lease out the land for big money.

  4. I can't wait when the value of money crashes so that the rich will experience what it's like to be in need. Ezekiel 7:19


  6. Honestly as another black man if you want thrive as a community. And not be sold, take care of it and ownership of it. So that you have control.

  7. This is what you get when you don't own your house… My parents ALWAYS taught us to OWN!! nEVER rent or lease

  8. So they're only going to allow people of Haitian descent to live in that affordable housing apartment mentioned near the end of the video? That is also a form of discrimination in itself, especially if you're low income and not Haitian.

  9. This is how the homeless crisis we’re seeing now happened. Force out low income people to places they cannot afford to live to make room for “new development”

  10. And a lot of you black immigrants thought we African Americans were just complainers gentrification / systemic institutional racism / General racism don't like you all either just stick around racism has a lot more to show you

  11. This is nothing new at all, white men have been doing this since their people have step foot on this land. Other ethnic groups have always been pushed to the worst part and they take the best to the good part of the land. Just ask the ingenious people of the USA. That is why the eminent domain in the USA was change so that the government of each state can come in and take the land for profit under the disguise public park. It affects only people of color. Raise the rent to people of color they will move and what the government will do is build projects again and house them there. It has been done many times before and will continue until people come together as one and fight back. White people know this and do nothing, and wonder what racism is. History does repeat itself. Sad so Sad that they are so like this.

  12. I tell people in Seattle if you can't make it there they push you to Tacoma if you can't make it there they push you out of Washington state now in San Diego if you can't afford to live in the inner City they're pushing you all the way to Mexico in San Francisco gentrification has everybody in the streets

  13. The Haitian Community needs to Sell High with Clauses in their Sales Agreement that Allows them to Buy Back in at Reduced Prices. So that when this new Development is Finished and Complete, Haitians will still be included in the New Projects.

    They must Stand United with every single Haitian Property owner. In this way , they will not be Picked off One by One as these anew Developments are Set out to do. Pick them off one by one, then two by two then three by Three is what these Big Developers are all about.

    Yes Change Must be Inclusive but if these Haitian Brothers and Sisters do not hold together, they will have only Negative Impact from these changes. So why can't a Haitian Homeowner who sells his Property not be included in the New Condominium Project that will come as a Matter of this Change. They should all be allowed to Buy back in, at Reduced Prices and the City should act on their Behalf to ensure that the Builder include the Haitians in their new Condominium Projects.

  14. I saw gentrification in Chicago’s Lincoln Park 45 years ago.No one pays attention until it’s actually happening to them.

  15. Ayiti means the land of beautiful mountains and ti Ayiti is elevated above ground huh? Not a coincidence…p.s. “climate gentrification” or environmental racism is nothing new this is been going on in Politricks for a while now. Every hood is located below sea level on the east coast intentionally so those residents would be on the front line…A serious shift need to happen because this is about survival.

  16. Stop isolating it to a specific culture, they are doing this to all black people everywhere, it’s always been open season for black all round this earth.

  17. They'll sell later. Money talks. That's Egan Palestinians did. They started to sell their homes to the invading Jews. Many sold their homes in Jerusalem so these Haitians will sell their homes for money.

  18. Terrible how when those with more funds want to take over an area…they do just that with no regards to the lives that are already there.

  19. Land subsidence all across the southern US is not due to climate change, It is geosyncline in action. This is a story based on the climate change lie

  20. Trump 2020 get rid of all the illegals and watch Miami rent prices fall to the ground u wont able to fill the apartment's they will have to bring the prices down

  21. I think this video is partially incorrect, people are moving there because of higher ground but mainly because wynwood is near by and it is a growing part of Miami so stores want to expand.

  22. Gentrification been started long time ago when they spread crack around and propaganda about violence ..what we see now is their plan coming in to play

  23. This isn't happening just in Little Haiti. Every place that black people live in America is being gobbled up by whites. White people are coming and trying to move us out all over the country. This has happened in San Francisco, Brooklyn, Harlem, Washington DC, Virginia, South Central Los Angeles, Oakland CA, Atlanta, South Carolina, New Orleans, Texas 5th Ward neighborhood etc..This is a new version of what was done in the early 20th century. Whites burned down our towns in the 1900's, towns like Black Wall Street in Oklahoma, Rosewood in Florida and numerous other black towns and neighborhoods in America. It was a common practice to disrupt our communities, taking our wealth and disbanding our families. White Americans have not changed, they just do what they always did, just in a different way. Gentrification is the latest version of their sick terrorism against us. They always want what we have, a sick destructive jealousy.

  24. I'm not say this sealevel is not a problem for Miami. All I'm saiding it not man made climate change. the sea is rising at 2.4mm per year little to nothing to do with man made climate change. The problem with Miami (the land) is it is sinking. What has nothing to with climate. Man made Climate change is not a real thing. It just use time and time as that is the problem. We would be much better spenting money defence then trying to stop putting CO2 in the air. Climate change is a waste of time and money.

  25. They build small dams to redirect the water and flood certain areas then try and blame climate the areas are valuable so they try n devalue with flood so if u sell u sell cheaper they buy it and the property double in value over night then they resell or lease then borrow more money based on the new inflated value that they wouldn't pay the original owner for

  26. I live on the other side of the tracks in Morningside closer to the bay sea level 2-3 inches for the past few months I get 5-10 realtor cold calls a day trying to buy my property I have even have had them knock on my door offering me half of my property value telling me get what you can before your under water . If I could put a restraining order I would . i now answer my door with pepper spray aggressive door knockers will get a face full I don’t care if it’s legal or not .vultures bottom dwellers BEWARE

  27. I have a win-win solution for everyone. Haitian community get together and set a high base price like one million dollars to sell any property, then you make a another community anywhere you want. It will also help you out of poverty.

  28. Figure it like this… the unscrupulous rich will indeed find a means to steal the land from the people. Like it or not they will, due to corruption thruought Miami and Florida. so… If you decide not to sell and fight , realize it would ultimately, likely be a loosing battle, rather, choose to sell at a rate that's comparable to what that plot of land would actually be worth, Not what they claim its worth because they will never tell your the truth. They will offer you 100 grand to 500 grand. No don't even!!!.. they will offer 1 to 5 million… NO! dont fall for that either !.. YOU have to understand the value of what they intend to build on your land and what its worth to them. They intend to build billion dollar high rise condos. in other words your plot of land in the form of a miami ocean bay view condo, would be worth no less than 500 million!. Consider that each condo unit would sell for at least 10 to 25 million, multiplied by several stories of units. 10 to 25 million!! , seems like alot? no it isnt, not when areas of miami are projected to be underwater in the next 50 years, and your land is but a few to rest way above sea levels. So again. If you decide to sell, sell at no less than its true value. Again, Little Haiti rests at such a height above sea level one must consider all those that would eventually be forced out of their homes. This very real scenario and projection exacerbates the value of that area, as its one of the few places, new properties can be built. So double your rate!!. seriously!!! these are legal companies ran by criminals who see you as dirt to them. white gentrification and colonization alive and well, and they will find illegal ways to rob you of your land. They have the power and wealth to do so. SO with that, IF you decide to fight then fight. but be warned your dealing with criminals. And they will attempt to break you in the courts, and the judges and juries will be bought out. So i say get what your land is truly worth. or see the carpet pulled from beneath your feet. I want you to fight, fight for what is legally yours, fight because the rich should not simply be allowed to walk on people, BUT, i do sight history, Haitians know how to fight and win, but if you need to sell, then sell right!! get what its truly worth and nothing less, If you sell, then you should be leaving as multi mutli millionaire.

  29. this is from a black American the more they build these condominiums in Florida the more is going to sink ,,,, it's too much weight these people already know that s*** anyway

  30. Interesting fact. Not all white Americans are rich. We are working class to. And we are feeling the pressure of no affordable housing in Miami to. It's like I'm being told I can work in Miami but I can't live in Miami. It's really bad here in South Florida

  31. If I were him, I would sell and buy in a mountain, not only sea levels are rising, but heat is rising, let's see who can stand 50C

  32. And when this happens, it's gonna flush those same Haitians and their murderous gang members into the few decent black neighborhoods we have left🤦🏾

  33. So they want the black people to live on the high ground away from the nice beach and now it’s going to get ruined they want to run the black people down where the flooding is

  34. I hope all members of the Haitian community are familiarizing themselveswith AGENDA 21. Ask the black woman thats helping find you places to live about AGENDA 21. WAKE UP PEOPLE.

  35. I am a first generation American from Little Haiti. My mom has a salon on 59th that I grew up in my entire life. I’m in college now and every time I come back I see something new. First it’s the city bikes, then the new fitness studios, and rooftops bars. I feel like a tourist and it’s not the same little Haiti I know. How I grew up, there were tons of family owned businesses (dry cleaners, laundry, etc) and now they’re slowly declining. My old church, La Foi Apostolic, was bought out and forced to move a few years ago. As a first hand native, all of this sickens me.

  36. It's all the same done to The Indians ' Mexicans ' Blacks ' Hatians It's All About The Rich & Powerful Their Gentrification Is Getting Rid Of Poor People & People Of Color.

  37. Gentrification has its benefits. It renovates and revitalizes worn down neighborhoods. A lot of the buildings in Little Haiti look old and dilapidated.

    There may even be some benefits for the low-income residents that decide to stay in gentrifying neighborhoods.
    — New job opportunities emerge as more stores open and construction picks up.
    — Longtime homeowners benefit from rising property values.
    — There's often a decline in crime.
    — On average, credit scores of the poor residents improve in gentrifying neighborhoods.
    And it appears that when a neighborhood gentrifies, it doesn't necessarily lead to widespread displacement.

  38. This is the most intellectually dishonest video I've seen since I turned on CNN. Developers have an investment timeline of 1-3 years, not 100 years. It just so happens that gentrification is pushing in all directions near Miami. It just so happens that Little Haiti is very convenient to all the action, thus money can be made living close to where everyone wants to live. Climate gentrification is a joke.

  39. That guy with the house should sell they are gonna force him out one way or another I’d hate to say it but he can ask them for a dumb amount n they will pay cus it’s peanuts for them assuming he leaves at once …

  40. The government in Miami is corrupt, they allow Brazil China and Europe to build here at an alarming rate. Same thing is happening now in ft. Lauderdale. These politicians don’t fight for anyone but themselves

  41. The Sea level is not rising, this is a local event. If if were rising it would be rising in the Bahamas, other ports in Florida etc. P.S. why is Gentrification a bad thing? Turning around a neighborhood is a good thing not bad. Life is survival of the fittest, keeping old crappy neighborhoods bad just because certain demographics live there is actually kinda racist.

  42. Born and raised in Miami, little Haiti is in excess of 5-7 miles from our beach or ocean.. we miamians don’t see anything different about the sea level

  43. Sell now. Greenland will melt, that’s 18 ft sea level rise. The Thiel Glacier adds +10ft. The entire state will be underwater, so buyers are fools. If you cash out, help your kids move someplace safe. (We love Haitian people here in Washington)

  44. Let's not complain about ppl being pushed out but let's speak about putting an end to global warming and with that in play nobody would get pushed out of their communities. Because at the end of the day , money talks . Big bank take little bank

  45. *What now, Climate gentrification is now the coded word for white gentrification.maybe that work in Miami or rest of Florida but up here in Harlem, we still called it by it proper name white gentrification

  46. Well what happened to that warrior spirit I keep hearing about I knew it was a make believe story

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