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Neighborhood Housing / Making Housing Affordable

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Topic 8

Slide Shows:
Housing for Community
The following three slide shows include a range of topics regarding housing.  Part 1 covers the importance of decent affordable housing to personal, family, and neighborhood stability.  A history of affordable housing programs is presented, showing how motives other than the interests of residents, in combination with entrenched racial bias, often have resulted in shabby housing, the concentration of poverty, and encouraged abandonment and urban sprawl. Affordable housing is covered in the context of early, formative urban redevelopment practices and politices in St. Louis and Chicago.   Part 2 identifies types of neighborhoods and suggests different housing programs appropriate for them.  It shows how neighborhood planning provides a strong basis for creating a housing program.  It reviews how the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) can be a tool to implement the program.  The Part 3 slide show addresses the many ways to achieve housing affordability, covering legislative actions, development techniques, and subsidies especially Low Income Housing Tax Credits, Historic Preservation Tax Credits, and New Market Tax Credits.

Part 1 - History of Subsidized Housing, Government Action in St. Louis and Chicago, Findings, and Recommendations
Powerpoint presentation (in Adobe Presenter format) Click "Notes" for author's description of slides. It is suggested that you set the main slide controller (in the bar under the slide) to ">" / stop, instead of "||" and advance the slides manually using the ">|" and "|<"

Part 2 - Neighborhood Change, Planning, and the Community Reivestment Act
Part 3 – Achieving Housing Affordability

Neighborhood character is affected in large measure by its housing. While housing affordability is a sought-after goal, neighborhood housing policy must be consistent with neighborhood characteristics. The ideal is a "stable" neighborhood which is neither declining nor gentrifying. Housing programs should be tailored to neighborhood conditions. There are many programs and approaches to creating housing affordability. The goal is to foster a diverse community based on a mix of housing.


Peter Medoff and Holly Sklar, Streets of Hope, The Fall and Rise of an Urban Neighborhood (Boston: South End Press, 1994), Chapter 5, "Controlling the Land Through Eminent Domain" and Chapter 6, “Land and Housing Development: The Triangle and Beyond”, pp. 115-167.
Reading #1

Patricia Ewalt, Edith Freeman, and Dennis Poole, eds. Community Building: Renewal, Well-Being, and Shared Responsibility (Washington, D.C.: National Association of Social Works Press, 1998) Ch. 21, Carol S. Cohen and Michael H. Phillips, “Building Community: Principles for Social Work Practice in Housing Settings”, in, pp. 239-251.
Reading #5 (pdf)

Ch. 13, "Neighborhood Preservation Through Affordable Housing", in Murphy and Cunningham, Organizing for Community Controlled Development, pp. 257-276.
Reading #7

Adrienne Schmitz, et. al., Multifamily Housing Development Handbook (Washington, D.C. : ULI – the Urban Land Institute, 2000), Chapter 5, “Financial Feasibility Analysis”, pp. 83-93.
Reading #11 (pdf)





Selected Readings (pdf)
Housing Policies / Affordable Housing

Subtopics inside:
Dudley Street and the South Bronx
Housing and neighborhood types
Social conditions and housing
Overview of housing programs
Housing market research and financing
Making housing affordable
Local sources of funds for affordable housing
Community Development Corporations
Community Reinvestment Act and housing
Putting it all together


S. Mark White, Affordable Housing: Proactive & Reactive Planning Strategies, American Planning Association, Planning Advisory Service Report #441, December, 1992.
Reading #15 (pdf)

Ch. 3, "Community Development Corporations and the Resurgence of Organizing", in Murphy and Cunningham, Organizing for Community Controlled Development, pp. 38-52.
Reading #19

Workforce Housing Opportunity Act, This is the original version of the legislation written to establish policy for Albuquerque's affordable housing programs.  Notable elements in it include: defining neighborhoods as "Stable", "Rising", and "Declining" with appropriate housing strategies for each category; setting aside $10 million in each two-year CIP program for affordable housing; prioritizing affordable housing for households at 50% and 30% of Area Median Income; designating non-profit organizations with being the lead affordable housing developers; linking housing provisions to the priorities of the Planned Growth Strategy (see Topic 3 - Metropolitan Forces Affecting Neighborhoods & Urban Growth Management); providing zoning and administrative incentives for affordable housing; and providing that projects receiving financial support are made permanently affordable. A number of these provision were compromised during adoption, but the approaches are valuable.

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Dr. Louis Colombo & Ken Balizer, AICP