Monday, January 30, 2012

Who moved my AYT?

"$40,000 per month?  You must be joking."

I am happy our neighborhood in Washington DC is thriving.  Before we moved here, it used to be too dangerous to walk here, even during the day.  It is now a happening place, with all sorts of restaurants, theaters, and places to hear live music.  Fortunately, it remains ethnically and socio-economically diverse.  It's still edgy (there is too much crime), but I like it.

Nonetheless, development brings costs, as well all know.  I have had friends in the neighborhood who have had to move out because the rents have risen.  And some of the funkier businesses have gone away.  I had thought about this mostly in the abstract until the other day when I drove over to 14th St to get a tire fixed only to find my neighborhood garage closed.  One of the managers was there packing things away.  When I asked him why he was leaving, he said:

"When our lease came up, they raised our rent from $14,000 per month to $40,000 per month."

$40,000 per month? You must be joking," I replied.

"We might have been able to pay a bit more, but not triple.  There was no way."

Wow.  $40,000 per month.  That puts some numbers around the whole phenomenon, doesn't it?