The Lower East Side is located north of Houston and South of Division Street, and is housed between the East River and the Bowery. It began its history with Russian and Polish Jews fleeing persecution. Its richest legacy is the immigrant tradition of poor people coping with, and often overcoming, horrendous living conditions. Despite its low-rise nature, this has been one of the world’s densest areas in terms of population. For more than a century and a half, the Lower East Side has been one of the city’s poorest areas and has been very slow to change. But recent development has begun to change the landscape of the neighborhood and the Lower East Side is quickly beginning to gentrify, with a number of new luxury residences rising up among older tenement buildings.