Fading away: Barbershops and gentrification in Downtown Newark, New Jersey | Photo Story


House of Styles, formerly Technihair 791 Broad Street. House of Styles, stands at the epicenter of Newark, on Broad and Market Streets.  Originally called Technihair, this two-floor establishment housed barbers, stylists, and tattoo artists for over 25 years.  

Although, the first owner was Latino, followed by an Arab, it ended up in the hands of an African-American man.  This was the first salon I worked in, in the downtown area. Also, it is a place where many top hairstylists in Newark passed through, at one time or the other.  

The saying at Technihair was that “If you can’t make money on Broad and Market, you cannot make money anywhere.”  That’s because all public transportation passed by the shop, along with thousands of pedestrians daily. You also had windows along the side of the building that allowed passersby to see the happenings inside.  

Right now, this building is also being sold, while the current rent along with renovations are too high for most local entrepreneurs.  When this building is finally acquired, it is a checkmate for downtown Newark. I believe they are waiting for a reason. I call the strategy on how they build, “connecting the dots.” In this plan, developers identify key stores, renovate them or rebuild then gradually take over the stores in between. 

What I mean by this is, Technihair is not far from Million Dollar Kuts (photo 1). An already rehabbed building sits a block away from Million Dollar Kutz.  Once they cross Broad Street and take Technihair, a building that stands in front of one of the busiest bus stops in the city, minority stores and outdoor vendors who often spin house music throughout the day, will be moved away.

1 Comment

  1. That’s crazy hearing about Million Dollar Kutz. The accomplishments of gentrification is like the backlash our community receive due to lack of economical unity. Duane and Kaia. Keep up the great work making knowledge born. Ptah. Peace

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