Saturday, September 28, 2013

Marketing Japantown

From the SF Examiner's story on the Planning Department's plan for Japantown:

Challenges for the community are that it doesn't attract the amount of tourist dollars as other neighborhoods, not many Japanese live there and in-migration of Japanese is much lower than other ethnic groups. "Keeping in mind the unique history of what's happened to our Japanese community in San Francisco, I believe it's imperative we work to protect this neighborhood's cultural jewel," said Supervisor London Breed, whose district includes Japantown.

Right. "Not many Japanese live there," which means we have to pretend that it's Japanese and preserve it! What they're really talking about is marketing the neighborhood to get more "tourist dollars." Nothing wrong with that, as long as we're clear about what we're doing, which is not really preserving a Japanese neighborhood.

See the Japantown Task Force's pie chart on the ethnic composition of the neighborhood that tells us that more black people and white people live in that neighborhood than Japanese.

Look too at the Planning Department's map of the Japantown neighborhood. Somehow Japantown---which isn't really Japanese---has expanded two blocks South of Geary Boulevard! Development scam alert!

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