Last week, Curbed shared photos from the marketing materials for the new luxury development of the former Domino Sugar refinery. The place is now being called "The Refinery." Because, yes, that's what the building was, but also--obviously--because that's what the developers (and City Hall) want the luxury development to do.
It will help to refine the neighborhood.
What do refineries do? They cleanse. They purify. Sugar refineries, in particular, take darker materials and turn them white. That is also being done--has been done--to Williamsburg and to much of Brooklyn and the city.
New York is becoming exponentially whiter every day, thanks to hyper-gentrification. The process acts as one big refinery, a factory for smoothing and bleaching.
Mayor de Blasio appears to be all for this. Or else he's been
brainwashed by the neoliberal free-marketeer myth that luxury
development is inevitable. (It is not.) He recently told Crain's NYC Summit conference that the "only way" to create an inclusive city "is through development."
He could not be more wrong. Development excludes. Development whitens. Development segregates.
The designers who created The Refinery's renderings know this. Look at the people in the images. What do you see?