PHILADELPHIA – Gentrifying neighborhoods such as Northern Liberties and Fishtown are breeding grounds for small businesses. It seems that the like-minded residents of these communities believe in the entrepreneurial spirit and have a bias towards “progressive” decision-making when it comes to consumerism.
The large network of bars and boutique shops, which are supported by the nearby denizens, would not normally be able to compete against larger corporate chains due to disparity in advertising budgets and pricing. Right or wrong, that’s just how business is structured in capitalist economies. Survival of the fittest.
But quality and personal connection may be making a come back in areas like these when people feel that they can sacrifice a bit more to do what they feel is right. In the early twentieth century (and for most of human history), urban communities only had the mom-and-pop shops which also served as social centers.
Technology and transportation innovations changed this way of living.
Maybe, the fact that we can be in contact with anyone at any time has made us realize the importance of building a strong community in the ‘real world’ and not on a mobile platform.
Or maybe I’m just spewing nonsense.
In any case, small businesses are sprouting and flourishing in these neighborhoods and I ventured to one myself to see the inter-workings of the owners, employees, and patrons.