The Atlantic

A Single Solution for New York's Two Biggest Problems

The city is grappling with decaying infrastructure, and struggling to provide affordable housing.
Source: Mark Lennihan / AP

When I was growing up in Brooklyn in the 1980s, it was a watchword for urban decay, notorious for its high levels of violent crime and joblessness. Most of our family friends fled the city as soon as they could cobble together a down payment for a house in the suburbs, and it was hard to blame them. But the Salams toughed it out, and we are now delighted to have done so. By the 2010s, New York City had experienced a dramatic revival. Kay Hymowitz, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, vividly describes this transformation in her recent book, . Violent crime has plummeted and the local economy has boomed, to the point where there is more anxiety about the galloping pace of gentrification than there is about middle-class families rushing for the exits. Compared to the nightmare

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