This AADN StoryMap examines some of the critical events that have shaped the Harlem of the West and also highlights some of the Black urbanists who have contributed to shaping its historical and contemporary identities.
The Black community in Oakland has been a major stakeholder in the city since World War II. While this community thrived briefly for a few years after the war, it has endured deindustrialization, racism, displacement due to Urban Renewal, and a drug epidemic. Currently, the Black community in Oakland is facing a growing problem – rising property prices paired with decades of disinvestment have resulted in a housing crisis that disproportionately affects Black people.
Join us as we trace the city’s origins and critical events that have shaped Black history in the Harlem of the West. Later in this StoryMap, we highlight the contributions of a few Black urbanists who have shaped and continue to shape its historical and contemporary identities.
Use the scrollbar on the embedded StoryMap below to journey with us to Oakland. We’ll learn about the city’s Black history and the ongoing work of contemporary Black designers.
The Oakland StoryMap was composed by Olufemi Olamijulo, a student in the Master of Urban Planning program at the Harvard Graduate School of Design and Master of Public Policy program at the Harvard John F. Kennedy School of Government.