On episode 56 of the Nooze Hounds podcast, we spoke with Ismaail Qaiyim, founder and principal attorney at Queen City Community Law Firm and political education and policy co-chair with Housing Justice Coalition CLT, about Eastland, displacement and gentrification in Charlotte.
Qaiyim was hired earlier this year to help vendors at the Central Market, a flea market that has operated on the former Eastland Mall site since 2015, who were displaced on Feb. 11 in the lead-up to the site’s redevelopment. Vendors say their pleas for the city to help them relocate and continue on with their market have gone unheard.
In our latest cover story, Ryan reports on the displacement of Central Market vendors, as well as that of the hundreds of skaters who have made a home at the hugely popular Eastland DIT skatepark on the same property.
“We wanted to be able to have a meeting, figure out what the plan was. Everybody knew that the vendors were going to have to go to a different site, but at the same time, giving a week or two weeks of notice instead of this, I felt like they escalated the situation by doing it this way,” Qaiyim said of the city’s approach to the Feb. 11 eviction, which involved police.
On the podcast, Charlotte native Qaiyim discusses the Eastland site, but also his wider community organizing work around displacement and gentrification in Charlotte with the Housing Justice Coalition, from Lake Arbor to Howie Acres.
Remember you can catch us on Spotify and other places where you find podcasts, and be sure to check out Queen City Podcast Network for a slew of other great Charlotte podcasts that aren’t quite as good as ours but pretty damn close. Find past Nooze Hounds episodes here.
Become a Nerve Member: Get better connected and become a member of Queen City Nerve to support local journalism for as little as $5 per month. Our community journalism helps inform you through a range of diverse voices.
This work by Queen City Nerve is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.