Land trusts come together to fight gentrification in Chinatown

Chiyi Tam

The Toronto Chinatown Land Trust plans to buy neighbourhood buildings to keep local land in community hands, so residents can maintain the essence of Chinatown.

In response to the rapid changes in their beloved neighbourhood, residents came together to form the Toronto Chinatown Land Trust.

Chiyi Tam, managing director of the trust, and her team will soon be conducting a census on the ownership of buildings in Chinatown. They want to speak to all residents about how to keep local land in community hands.

“When you think about Chinatowns, they exist because groups of people do not have systemic power and therefore the answer is to build collective power,” Tam explained. “If you can’t provide housing security for yourself and acquire property because you have been made illegal as an individual, a good strategy is to come together with other people, form an association, and buy it as a democratic and non-profit organization together.”

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Aloysius Wong

Aloysius Wong