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Author

Rand Irons

Date of Award

2015

Document Type

Restricted Thesis: Campus only access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department

Political Science

Abstract

Richmond in recent years has experienced rapid and uneven changes that have altered entire neighborhoods, while leaving others much the same as they were before. The city has been adding population after decades of decline. The U.S. Census Bureau recently reported a nearly 10,000 person increase over the last four years since 2010 alone with further increases projected (U.S Census Bureau). This influx of people has led to numerous new construction projects, home renovations, the tear down or development of vacant buildings, and the building of apartments across the city. Services such as grocery stores, restaurants, art studios, and numerous other businesses have established themselves in the city. However, this development has not been uniform. Some neighborhoods seem stuck or continue to decline during this period of expansion. Seeing the unevenness of development across neighborhoods during my service in the city, I decided to undertake a project to examine development in the city more thoroughly. I wanted to understand not only how the development process played out and who was involved, but also, I was interested in the role that justice could play in development decision-making in the city. Upon reviewing the information I gathered through interviews, I believe that there needs to be an empowerment of government and a radical rethinking of public authority to include robust democratic inclusion in the development process with the goal of producing just outcomes.

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