Peralta Community College District's Only Student-Run Publication
Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

New Vice President leadership at Laney announced
New Vice President leadership at Laney announced
Besikof selects Lily Espinoza and Ashish Sahni for Laney VP positions
Isabelly Sabô Barbosa, Social Media Editor • May 13, 2024
Student Trustee Natasha Masand believes her voice has the power to impact the PCCD community.
Student Trustee Natasha Masand finds her voice
Isabelly Sabô Barbosa, Social Media Editor • March 19, 2024
Archives
Peralta Trustee Paulina Gonzalez Brito addresses the crowd at Berkeley City College’s 50th anniversary celebration. The event featured a block party along with a groundbreaking ceremony for the college’s new Milvia Street building. (Photo: Marcus Creel/PCCD)
‘We’re still rising’: BCC celebrates 50th anniversary
College throws block party and breaks ground on new building
Sam O'Neil, Associate Editor • May 6, 2024
College of Alameda jazz professor Glen Pearson demonstrates his musical talent on his classroom piano. Hes one of the newest members of the Count Basie Orchestra, a historic 18-piece jazz ensemble that took home a Grammy this year.
The humble Grammy-winning pianist leading CoA’s music program
Desmond Meagley, Staff Writer • March 4, 2024
Archives

    Rent Blues

    According to Forbes’ Magazine there are only three U.S. cities worse for renters than Manhattan in NYC and they’re all in the Bay Area. Those cities are, unsurprisingly, San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose. Of the three Oakland had the fewest available rental units last year.
    It’s a topic any Oakland resident is likely all too familiar with. Gentrification, rising rents, lack of affordable housing, lack of any housing, the problems are impossible to ignore. While some argue that any and all newly built housing is what Oakland needs to address the housing crisis, others strongly disagree. 
    With plans for new high-rises and market-rate buildings all across Oakland, many are saying “no.” As rents rise, those pushed from their homes and their city are those least able to adapt. The low-income families, the elderly and the disabled, all left to wonder where they might lay their heads at night. 
    While Oakland’s eviction laws and rent regulation protect some residents, particularly those who’ve lived in the same building for decades or more, many Oakland residents find themselves out of luck thanks to a variety of loopholes in what some call Oakland’s “primitive” tenant protections. Residents in low-rent units end up out of a home so new owners can dress up the buildings and charge triple to wealthier renters looking to save a few bucks they could have just as easily spent. 
    But the solution isn’t simple or even completely tangible. Crushing plans for luxury market-rate buildings only serves to prevent alleviating the high demand for housing. At the same time, the financial cost of low-income/affordable housing is a cost to the city and the state, so without vocal communities taking action against high-scale, luxury housing there is little to no motivation for the city to build those affordable units. 
    In the past week I’ve delved into the housing market once again and it’s not just torturous, it’s impossible. My building is not one protected by eviction laws or rent regulation and was recently purchased by a large property investment group. Our once affordable apartment is now going to be remodeled and rented out at more than three times what I’ve paid for many years. Oakland needs more affordable housing and better tenant protection. The problem is so clear that the lack of action being taken to produce a solution is maddening, especially now as I experience personally the troubled housing climate. It’s frustrating to watch the city you love, the place where your child has grown up, allow its residents to be thrown out onto the street just so someone can make an extra buck. 
    Kit Berry is a tower staff writer. Email her at happycowsmmmmcheese(at)gmail.com.

    About the Contributor
    In the fall of 2019, The Laney Tower rebranded as The Citizen and launched a new website. These stories were ported over from the old Laney Tower website, but byline metadata was lost in the port. However, many of these stories credit the authors in the text of the story. Some articles may also suffer from formatting issues. Future archival efforts may fix these issues.  
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