Subsidized and/or Affordable Housing

Introductions - Urban Issues - Miscellaneous News, Topics, Interests
User avatar
Anondson
IDS Center
Posts: 4077
Joined: July 21st, 2013, 8:57 pm
Location: Where West Minneapolis Once Was

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby Anondson » September 20th, 2014, 10:07 pm

Brooklyn Center and Brooklyn Park are accusing the state of illegally concentrating poverty there and looking the other way when other richer cities didn't do their part.

http://www.startribune.com/local/north/275901391.html

grant1simons2
IDS Center
Posts: 4301
Joined: February 8th, 2014, 11:33 pm
Location: Marcy-Holmes

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby grant1simons2 » October 23rd, 2014, 9:55 pm

The Minnesota Housing Finance Agency on Thursday said it would give a record-breaking $162 million in funding to affordable housing projects throughout the state.
Read more: http://finance-commerce.com/2014/10/sta ... z3H1zZRWxj

nate
Landmark Center
Posts: 296
Joined: February 26th, 2013, 2:01 pm

Re: Suburbs - General Topics

Postby nate » March 16th, 2015, 11:22 am

Fury likely to build over Met Council's affordable housing plan:

http://www.startribune.com/local/west/296392961.html

The comments are...well, kind of scary. At least 10-1 in opposition to affordable housing ever leaving the confines of Minneapolis, St Paul, or Brooklyn Park.

The attitude seems to be that "those people" are good enough to work at Fleet Farm, the gas station, and Dunn Brothers, but not good enough to actually live in the community. The inner cities can absorb thousands of new (badly needed) subsidized housing units but a few dozen in Carver draws outrage from well-off owners of homes subsidized by the 212 freeway expansion. Does anyone catch the irony here?

xandrex
Wells Fargo Center
Posts: 1365
Joined: January 30th, 2013, 11:14 am

Re: Suburbs - General Topics

Postby xandrex » March 16th, 2015, 11:25 am

I was mildly amused (in a horrified way) that there was the woman who thought her inability to buy into Bearpath was the same as a family looking for any housing whatsoever.

acs
Wells Fargo Center
Posts: 1379
Joined: March 26th, 2014, 8:41 pm

Re: Suburbs - General Topics

Postby acs » March 16th, 2015, 11:56 am

nate wrote:Fury likely to build over Met Council's affordable housing plan:

http://www.startribune.com/local/west/296392961.html

The comments are...well, kind of scary. At least 10-1 in opposition to affordable housing ever leaving the confines of Minneapolis, St Paul, or Brooklyn Park.

The attitude seems to be that "those people" are good enough to work at Fleet Farm, the gas station, and Dunn Brothers, but not good enough to actually live in the community. The inner cities can absorb thousands of new (badly needed) subsidized housing units but a few dozen in Carver draws outrage from well-off owners of homes subsidized by the 212 freeway expansion. Does anyone catch the irony here?
I'm going to have to disagree with you on the Inner cities "badly needing" more subsidized housing. If you've been following the debate lately a large study was just released by Myron Orfield (a well-known liberal) and the U of M which essentially points out how this strategy as implemented by the Met Council over the past 30 years has backfired horribly. Concentrating affordable housing "where it's needed" has only meant further racial and economic segregation perpetuating concentrated poverty which "necessitates" more low income housing.

I'd argue that the Met Council's new housing plan is a step in the right direction in that it does call for more affordable housing in the suburbs, but it still doesn't go nearly far enough because it still calls for the majority to be in the central cities and the Brooklyns while the outer suburbs get to pack it all along future light rail lines. We need to move back toward every corner of the Metro building their fair share.

http://www.law.umn.edu/uploads/ed/00/ed ... -26-15.pdf

Also, the Strib has picked up on this:
http://www.startribune.com/opinion/edit ... 78371.html

nate
Landmark Center
Posts: 296
Joined: February 26th, 2013, 2:01 pm

Re: Suburbs - General Topics

Postby nate » March 16th, 2015, 12:05 pm

My "badly needed" comment was referring to the overall metro area, where there's a serious shortage of affordable housing units.

The point is that the inner cities are more than pulling their weight when it comes to overall distribution of affordable housing, while even tentative forays into the suburbs reliably bring out the pitchforks.

twincitizen
Moderator
Posts: 6235
Joined: May 31st, 2012, 7:27 pm
Location: Standish-Ericsson

Re: Suburbs - General Topics

Postby twincitizen » March 16th, 2015, 12:14 pm

Do we need more affordable housing in North Minneapolis or Frogtown? Probably not, unless it's part of a future market-rate development or is at a key site including commercial space, etc. (see Penn & Broadway or University & Dale, etc.)

Do we need more affordable housing in SW Mpls, Uptown, and Merriam Park? Absolutely. As far as the urban core is concerned (incl. impoverished 1st ring) affordable housing should probably be placed in locations most proximate to retail/restaurant jobs and community colleges.

We're not building new public housing or Section 8 housing really anywhere. This entire conversation around *new* affordable housing development is almost entirely about Section 42 "tax credit" housing. Sometimes there are units dedicated to those transitioning out of homelessness or other dire situations, but for the most part we are talking about housing for individuals or families making 50%-60% of AMI. These are working people, not the destitute (and/or criminals) that the naysayers want to portray them as.

min-chi-cbus
Capella Tower
Posts: 3131
Joined: June 1st, 2012, 9:19 am

Re: Suburbs - General Topics

Postby min-chi-cbus » March 16th, 2015, 12:21 pm

nate wrote:Fury likely to build over Met Council's affordable housing plan:

http://www.startribune.com/local/west/296392961.html

The comments are...well, kind of scary. At least 10-1 in opposition to affordable housing ever leaving the confines of Minneapolis, St Paul, or Brooklyn Park.

The attitude seems to be that "those people" are good enough to work at Fleet Farm, the gas station, and Dunn Brothers, but not good enough to actually live in the community. The inner cities can absorb thousands of new (badly needed) subsidized housing units but a few dozen in Carver draws outrage from well-off owners of homes subsidized by the 212 freeway expansion. Does anyone catch the irony here?
That's why I don't know why the Met Council even bothers to ask what the residents think, they should just tell them this is how it is and this is how you're going to like it. It's like where to put a landfill or water tower -- nobody wants it near them but everybody wants those things and agrees they should be nearby.

If I ever get the cash I'm going to rule a real estate empire based on one sound principal: the home values adjacent to lower-income properties are under-valued and therefore could command closer to market-rate rents from people who have no financial stake in the game and have nothing to gain from their home values (i.e. most renters).

WHS
Landmark Center
Posts: 202
Joined: April 25th, 2014, 10:57 am

Re: Suburbs - General Topics

Postby WHS » March 16th, 2015, 1:47 pm

min-chi-cbus wrote: That's why I don't know why the Met Council even bothers to ask what the residents think, they should just tell them this is how it is and this is how you're going to like it. It's like where to put a landfill or water tower -- nobody wants it near them but everybody wants those things and agrees they should be nearby.

If I ever get the cash I'm going to rule a real estate empire based on one sound principal: the home values adjacent to lower-income properties are under-valued and therefore could command closer to market-rate rents from people who have no financial stake in the game and have nothing to gain from their home values (i.e. most renters).
It used to do this, too -- its previous housing plan allowed it to withhold sewage and road funding if cities refused to accommodate their (statutorily mandated) fair share of low and moderate income housing. But the Met Council of today refuses to acknowledge it has this power, or has ever wielded this power, and says regional housing disparities are because of political forces outside of its control (e.g., suburban intransigence).

David Greene
IDS Center
Posts: 4761
Joined: December 4th, 2012, 11:41 am

Re: Suburbs - General Topics

Postby David Greene » March 17th, 2015, 1:22 pm

acs wrote:I'd argue that the Met Council's new housing plan is a step in the right direction in that it does call for more affordable housing in the suburbs, but it still doesn't go nearly far enough because it still calls for the majority to be in the central cities and the Brooklyns while the outer suburbs get to pack it all along future light rail lines. We need to move back toward every corner of the Metro building their fair share.
That's far too simplistic. We need affordable housing where it is convenient for people without a car to get to jobs. That means locating it near transit. Most of our good transit is in the urbanized area so naturally that's where most of the demand for affordable housing is. It also means affordable housing in the suburbs should be close to reasonable good transit which means mainly LRT, express routes and BRT.

If, when SWLRT opens, Eden Prairie has a better local bus system, then yes, more affordable housing should go there. I'll bet this is one reason some people out there don't want better local bus service.

There's a complex balance here. Some people don't want to provide transit in the suburbs period because it means fewer transit dollars going to the city. But that also means putting almost all of the affordable housing in the city, which is not necessarily bad. But it is something we should be aware of. Do we want even more segregated suburbs?

mulad
Moderator
Posts: 2803
Joined: June 4th, 2012, 6:30 pm
Location: Saint Paul
Contact:

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby mulad » March 17th, 2015, 1:59 pm

Well, *all* housing in the Twin Cities should be getting built within some reasonable distance of transit, not just affordable housing.

David Greene
IDS Center
Posts: 4761
Joined: December 4th, 2012, 11:41 am

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby David Greene » March 17th, 2015, 2:55 pm

mulad wrote:Well, *all* housing in the Twin Cities should be getting built within some reasonable distance of transit, not just affordable housing.
Many more people disagree with this notion than agree with it.

twincitizen
Moderator
Posts: 6235
Joined: May 31st, 2012, 7:27 pm
Location: Standish-Ericsson

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby twincitizen » March 18th, 2015, 11:21 am

BOOM: http://www.minnpost.com/minnesota-blog- ... le-housing

It isn't often you hear someone outside of the urbanist/transpo-wonk/planning circles refer to highway construction as a type of subsidy, but she absolutely nails it. Nice provocative trick title too.
The subsidy that let Carver grow and prosper? “Much faster commutes thanks to the extension of Hwy. 212.”

In short: subsidized highways for upper income suburbanites commuting to high-paying jobs — good. Subsidized housing for middle and low-income people, including those who work in the suburbs — bad. I know I’m not alone in seeing something wrong with these equations.

User avatar
Anondson
IDS Center
Posts: 4077
Joined: July 21st, 2013, 8:57 pm
Location: Where West Minneapolis Once Was

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby Anondson » March 18th, 2015, 11:36 am

212 let Carver mutate into modern incarnation of the sundown town.

WHS
Landmark Center
Posts: 202
Joined: April 25th, 2014, 10:57 am

Re: Suburbs - General Topics

Postby WHS » March 18th, 2015, 11:46 am

David Greene wrote:That's far too simplistic. We need affordable housing where it is convenient for people without a car to get to jobs. That means locating it near transit. Most of our good transit is in the urbanized area so naturally that's where most of the demand for affordable housing is.
I'd argue that acs 100% correct. We already have plenty of affordable housing convenient for people without a car. Like, literally, 90%+ of subsidized units affordable at very low incomes are in transit-heavy areas.

What we don't have is affordable housing convenient for people who want access to safe, stable neighborhoods, quality education, or suburban job opportunities.

I'm also not sure why you say "demand" for affordable housing is in the urbanized area -- how are you determining that? Waiting lists are longest in the suburbs, and polls of low-income residents and families suggest they prioritize low crime and good schools above other neighborhood characteristics. (Also, my understanding is that a good majority of lower-income families have access to a car.)

Obviously, if you can build in high-income, quality neighborhoods AND provide access to transit, that's fantastic. But the relative paucity of transit in the suburbs can't become a reason for locking lower incomes out of those areas.
But that also means putting almost all of the affordable housing in the city, which is not necessarily bad.
On the contrary, I think this is absolutely, unequivocally bad.

WHS
Landmark Center
Posts: 202
Joined: April 25th, 2014, 10:57 am

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby WHS » March 18th, 2015, 11:47 am

I know I'm never going to be very popular saying this on an urbanist forum, but: while transit is nice, for most people, including most low-income people, it's a secondary consideration when choosing where to live. It's a grievous policy error to make transportation central to the siting of affordable housing, when it's so rarely central to the housing choice on the private market. Centering affordable housing policy heavily around transit enables segregation and ultimately creates incentives for sprawl. And as David points out, it also creates a very strong incentive to oppose the expansion of transit into higher-income communities. I ride the bus every day; I love transit, think it's the future, and think we should be investing in it heavily. But I do not think that singling out subsidized housing for some idealized, transit-heavy urbanist lifestyle ultimately promotes urbanism in any way. People should be able to select the lifestyle that works for them, and for a lot of families, that's living in the burbs, where they can earn enough to drive to work.

I would also say it's no coincidence that transit is so frequently mentioned as an essential factor in housing policy, while education, long-understood to be a -- if not THE -- critical driver of housing decisions and long-term regional population shifts, often goes barely acknowledged. (Go check out how much space is devoted to each in the Met Council's latest plan if you don't believe me.) Focusing on one enables policymakers to preserve the status quo and say they're doing right by housing residents. Focusing on the other requires policymakers to face down angry mobs, like in Carver.

It's counterintuitive, but transit and affordable housing policy should be pursued separately. Tying them together too strongly undermines both.

RailBaronYarr
Capella Tower
Posts: 2702
Joined: September 16th, 2012, 4:31 pm

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby RailBaronYarr » March 18th, 2015, 11:58 am

twincitizen wrote:BOOM: http://www.minnpost.com/minnesota-blog- ... le-housing

It isn't often you hear someone outside of the urbanist/transpo-wonk/planning circles refer to highway construction as a type of subsidy, but she absolutely nails it. Nice provocative trick title too.
The subsidy that let Carver grow and prosper? “Much faster commutes thanks to the extension of Hwy. 212.”

In short: subsidized highways for upper income suburbanites commuting to high-paying jobs — good. Subsidized housing for middle and low-income people, including those who work in the suburbs — bad. I know I’m not alone in seeing something wrong with these equations.
Based on my readership nums, I'm assuming most folks missed this ;) I did some calculations on the costs vs revenue on this segment of 212: https://fremontavenueexperience.wordpre ... -building/

User avatar
FISHMANPET
IDS Center
Posts: 4602
Joined: June 6th, 2012, 2:19 pm
Location: Corcoran

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby FISHMANPET » March 18th, 2015, 12:51 pm

There's certainly the concern that leading a car dependent life style leave you very vulnerable. If you've got a car and you're right on the edge financially, what do you do if you've got a $1000 repair bill?

What are the basics to surive in the world right now? At the top I'd say food, shelter, transportation, and healthcare. We provide SNAP for food. We've got Section 8 and Section 42 for shelter. Medicaid and MnSure for healthcare. And for transportation we have transit. So we (in theory) have safety nets for all the basics of life. Except if you go to the suburbs you've basically lost access to a transportation safety net. It's rather paternalistic, but is it morally "right" to put a person in a position where something could happen that results in a death spiral where they lose their job and then their home most likely (I'm guessing you'll lose Section 8 if you can't at least pay something). Even if they do have greater opportunity in that scenario? On the other hand if we spread housing around enough there should be enough low level job opportunities in the nearby areas that a worker isn't totally stranded.

I think ultimately we need more subsidized housing everywhere. Not just in the core, not just in the suburbs, but everywhere.

Viktor Vaughn
US Bank Plaza
Posts: 607
Joined: July 10th, 2012, 6:37 pm

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby Viktor Vaughn » March 18th, 2015, 3:52 pm

I love this quote from that peice:
When someone who is working full-time can’t afford an apartment, that’s a societal failure, not a personal problem. Housing is one problem that the market is not solving.

Didier
Capella Tower
Posts: 2444
Joined: June 3rd, 2012, 10:11 am
Location: MSP

Re: Subsidized Housing

Postby Didier » March 18th, 2015, 5:01 pm

The Star Tribune article mentioned North Oaks, but I'm curious as to what jurisdiction the Met Council would have in regards to affordable housing there. From what I understand, it's an entirely private community (hence Google having to remove streetview) made up of single-family houses with no commercial property. What are the logistics of getting affordable housing there?


Return to “Anything Goes”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest