From the Secretary

The founding premise of our Nation was opportunity for all. That is our goal. If we are to succeed in our pursuit of that goal, we must tear down the barriers that divide us: We must reject the attitudes and prejudices, the stereotypes and discrimination, that are so destructive of a truly unified people.

Ours is a richly diverse Nation, and it is in our common interest to celebrate what unites us -- the fundamental values, the dreams and aspirations -- rather than dwell on what sets us apart. Working together, we can reach what President Clinton calls "One America" -- one Nation, one community, sharing the benefits and responsibilities of a common effort and a proud heritage.

It is a regrettable fact that most metropolitan areas harbor enclaves of isolation that condemn residents to poverty and despair. These enclaves represent a failed model of community building, but there is another, more successful model in our urban centers: stable, diverse communities that until now have been largely overlooked.

This issue of Cityscape contains case studies of 14 racially and ethnically diverse neighborhoods in 9 cities, along with grassroots strategies and public- and private-sector roles for maintaining them. Activities within these communities support jobs, education, and housing for all residents -- opportunity for all.

We at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development offer this issue of Cityscape in the hope that it will prove enlightening to our readers. We believe it can be especially useful to those directly involved in local community-building activities and the pursuit of an urban tomorrow that promises a better quality of life for all Americans.

Andrew Cuomo
Andrew Cuomo
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development

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