there was a recent article on the future of chinatown in the christian science monitor. there is no truer chinatown than what we experience in new york city but as the article points out it has felt the squeeze as it becomes harder for new immigrants to live there. as a result, chinese communities in flushing and brooklyn have thrived each with its particular culture. philadelphia is still able to attract many new immigrants but they live primarily in south philly not chinatown. south philly is closer to an ethnic enclave than philly chinatown is. the pressure of the squeeze has never been more visible with clear boundary markers and new construction for nice modern condos. our faith community seeks to help the community of chinatown flourish as well as track those of Chinese descent to engage them where they choose to live. many of our fuzhou congregants live in south philly and many of our graduate students live around upenn. many of the actual restaurant workers are hispanic. what does this all mean? well we’re still trying to figure that out but will keep you posted.
Urban development will ultimately win out, and as part of that trend, Chinatown will become a tourist destination, predicts Michael Liu, a research associate at the Institute for Asian-American Studies at the University of Massachusetts at Boston.
“The question is, who will this new Chinatown benefit?” asks Mr. Kwong, the author. “Making Chinatown a tourist destination … is not something to be handled by the location population.”
if your church is located in a chinatown, please share your observations and how does your church engage the life and politics of chinatown
also reference peter kwong, the new chinatown
read a brief history of chinatown, philadelphia
another look at philadelphia chinatown through citypaper
phillyblog forum on chinatown
i heart the pcdc [philadelphia chinatown development corporation]
chinese churches committed to the community of chinatown – chinese christian church and center | chinese gospel church of philadelphia