VIDEO: Gentrification Looms over Downtown SATX

Gentrification pressures have followed the construction of San Pedro Creek Culture Park.

Gentrification pressures have followed the construction of San Pedro Creek Culture Park. Image: Deceleration

Stand with Soap Works & Towne Center tenants-rights group is raising the voices of the city’s most vulnerable residents being torn by gentrification.

Greg Harman

In San Antonio, there have been winners and losers during the “Decade of Downtown” first trumpeted by former mayor and one-time U.S. HUD Secretary Julián Castro in 2010.

With incentivized investment sweeping the urban core, residents have had to navigate private investment companies, house flippers, and (in the case of the unsubsidized affordable income communities of Soap Works and Towne Center apartments) municipal development projects.

With a recent change of apartment ownership and the $175-million San Pedro Creek Project steaming ahead out their back doors (see last weekend’s unveiling of the San Pedro Creek Culture Park), those living at the Soap Works, Soap Works 2, and Towne Center apartments are now under constant pressure to relocate.

Houston-based Barvin Group purchased the apartment complex last year. Tenants have reported a steady hike in new fees and mixed responses to new lease agreements as well as limited information about the schedule of ongoing renovations, which have included converting the laundromat entirely to digital only payment methods.

This video contains stories from several of those tenants willing to speak publicly about their situation.