What is driving urban gentrification?

GENTRIFICATION, it turns out, has even spread to the former Communist eastern bloc. Around the railway station in Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, is a collection of wooden-slat houses built in the early 20th century. Twenty years ago, when Estonia’s murder rate was almost as high as Mexico’s is today, they were abandoned to squatters and petty criminals. But today aspirational Estonians are buying up the old houses, and bars and cafes are flourishing in the area. So if gentrification is happening in Estonia, as well as New York and London (see map), what is behind it?

Continue reading in: The Economist Explains

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