Mexico City becomes ‘work from home’ haven for US expats, but locals are getting priced out
, 2022-08-22 02:00:00,
CNN — Sandra Ortiz struggles to talk about her family’s restaurant without breaking down into tears.
“They arrived and told us we had five minutes to get everything out,” Ortiz said, recalling her family’s eviction in February.
Ortiz, 55, and her four siblings had taken over Tortería Colima from their father, who started it as a bakery in 1968. The siblings expanded it into a restaurant, which grew popular among locals in Mexico City.
For 54 years, the Ortiz family ran its business from the ground floor of a four-story building, located at a busy corner in the increasingly desirable Roma neighborhood.
But in recent years, the family watched as the community around them changed. An influx of foreigners, mostly from the US, inspired Mexican landlords to renovate and remodel their properties to accommodate the wealthier arrivals. Ortiz watched as visitors and tourists suddenly became full-time neighbors.
“Prices are much higher,” she said. “It’s difficult because a lot of these foreigners come, and they have a bunch of money to be able to spend on these apartments and rents.”
The Ortiz’s landlord followed the business trend. The family tried to push back and keep their space, but after a lengthy legal battle they were ultimately evicted in February. More than a half century of belongings were piled up on the street as they were forced out. The building is now being renovated into high-end apartments.
“A lot of pain … They hurt me a lot,” Ortiz said, washing dishes alongside…
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