An upscale home rises in Charlotte's Five Points neighborhood, where gentrification is bringing about rapid change and displacement. (Photo: Qcitymetro)

Qcitymetro is one of 60 news organizations selected to participate in Report For America’s national initiative to bolster reporting in underserved areas.

As a Report for America newsroom, Qcitymetro will host a full-time reporter who will focus on issues related to gentrification and affordable housing, especially as they pertain to Charlotte’s historically black neighborhoods.

Qcitymetro was launched in November 2008 to provide digital news and information relevant to the city’s growing population of black residents. Glenn H. Burkins, Qcitymetro’s founder and publisher, said being selected to host a Report for America journalist is another step toward his goal to build a daily news organization to cover issues and communities often ignored by traditional media, which are being squeezed by budget cuts and staff reductions.


“At a time when Charlotte is facing structural change – politically, economically and socially – the city’s black community can ill afford to be left voiceless,” he said. “Qcitymetro’s mission is to advocate for Charlotte to become a more inclusive city, in all facets of its life.”

Nowhere is the city’s racial divide more evident than in housing.

For more than two decades, as Charlotte has experienced explosive population growth, historically black neighborhoods near the uptown business and entertainment district have seen an influx of new professionals, who have driven up housing prices.

With its Report for America journalist, Qcitymetro will tell the stories of families and communities affected by gentrification, at times writing about solutions that might be working in other parts of the nation.

Report for America was launched in 2017.

An initiative of The GroundTruth Project, Report for America is donor-financed. This year, it will place about 60 journalists in newsrooms around the world and in the United States.

Under terms of the arrangements, Report for America corps members are managed locally. Half of the reporter’s salary is paid by Report for America, and half is covered locally, typically split between newsrooms and local donors.

Report for America is recruiting journalists to participate in the 2019 program. The deadline for applicants is Feb. 8.

Qcitymetro will work with Report for America in selecting a reporter who would begin the year-long assignment this summer.