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Hayti Residents Say They Can't Wait Any Longer for Durham's Promise of Urban Renewal

IndyWeek | Nov. 9, 2022

Hayti residents displeased with the Durham Housing Authority's plans for Fayette Place say long-promised "urban renewal" of the Hayti community can't come soon enough.

Last month in the Hayti District, during a community meeting with three city council members about the future of historic Fayetteville Street, a remarkable exchange took place between Faye Calhoun, who owns a home on Fayetteville Street, and Mark-Anthony Middleton, the city’s mayor pro tem.

“Can you believe they are giving away part of the African American community to someone else for 99 years? That’s five generations, and the city is not trying to build generational wealth or an economy that serves the area. We don’t have a grocery store. We don’t have a dry cleaners. It should be a destination place, and it’s not.”

Calhoun notes that during segregation, Black dignitaries could not stay at white-owned hotels, but then the Black-owned Biltmore Hotel was built in the location where luxury apartments now stand, which Hayti residents can’t afford.

“I say build it back,” she adds. “For Central’s homecoming, there was a list of hotels. Nothing was close to NCCU.”

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