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Lombard for News Kaitlin Heath, 21, is part of a growing trend in Harlem.  Take our Poll Big Apple, Big Changes Is New York City losing its multi-ethnic character?       Yes   No   I'm not sure  Kaitlin Heath?moved to Harlem a year ago, hoping to soak up the neighborhood's rich culture and save money on rent.The white, 21-year-old actress and her two roommates pay a total of $2,350 a month for a three-bedroom apartment  Clay Matthews Stitched Jersey in a renovated building on 119th St. and St. Nicholas Ave."It's incredible. I love thinking about all the stuff that has happened here," she said.Still, longtime residents often remind her she's a newcomer."Some people are pretty unhappy about it," she said. "Some say snide stuff and white jokes when I pass by on the street."Young, white professionals like Heath make up an increasing part of Harlem - once a bastion of black culture and political power.Over the last decade, the number of black Harlem   residents dropped 7 percentage points to the point that they barely make up the majority - 54.4% of the neighborhood's 192,980 residents.In 2000, whites made up 2% of the total population.Now they account for nearly 10%.Meanwhile, the number of college-degree holders over age 25 has doubled during the last decade to 28%, while the twentysomething population has also risen and accounts for an estimated 19.6% of Harlem.The demographic transformation follows two decades of revitalization that  Green Bay Packers Womens Jerseys has brought a slew of luxury condos, big-box stores, banks and trendy clothing shops.The improved infrastructure and services has been mostly praised."Harlem has become a more economically viable community with a balance between the poor and the upper class," said Howard Dodson, director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.The neighborhood influx has been a mixture of whites    Miami Hurricanes Combat Jersey and affluent and middle-class blacks - neither of which is a newcomer to the community, Dodson noted."I think people have gotten bent out of shape with the increase of whites," he  Throwback Dallas Cowboys Jerseys said."There have always been whites here, there have always been Hispanics," he added.Some fear polarization. Lucille McEwen, president of Harlem Congregation for Community Improvement, has helped create 2,000 affordable housing units, but sees a need for more."That is what changes the character, when you have million-dollar homes next to homes where people are earning $30,000 to $50,000," she said."The people in the million-dollar homes sometimes have more sway in what happens."Life-long Harlem resident Louise Brangman, 55, knows firsthand the rising cost of living.She grew up in public housing, a few blocks from where she works as a lobby attendant in a luxury development off St. Nicholas Ave."I'm a Harlemite. I can't even afford an apartment around here," said Brangman, who pays $500 a month in rent and lives with two roommates. "It's kind of sad."jfanelli@nydailynews.com
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