December 4, 2013

Beyond Bricks and Sticks

A weekly digest of current trends in housing and community development. The discussion examines topics from infrastructure to community fabric.

Austin to House Homeless in a Tiny House Village

(RECAP: Community First! Village, in the planning stages for nearly 10 years, is set to break ground on a 27-acre property sprinkled with tiny houses, mobile homes, teepees and refurbished RVs.)

Smart Cities around the World Are Saving Money Now. How about Your Home Town?

(RECAP: Proven smart cities strategies can boost productivity, increase responsiveness and reduce impact on the environment. Hard-pressed local governments often complain they have limited resources to invest, so the “Smart Cities Readiness Guide” points to eight areas that can yield quick payback.)

Housing Proves Challenging For Adults On The Spectrum

(RECAP: The vast majority of adults and transition-age individuals with autism are living at home and less than one-quarter are on waiting lists for housing services so they can live more independently. Financial concerns loom large as a potential barrier to achieving housing goals.)

A new way to keep tabs on mom and dad

(RECAP: A new pilot program designed to improve the well-being of aging Americans still living independently in their homes is looking to a rather unusual source of information to get ahead of people’s potential health problems: usage patterns of water, electric and gas.)

Goldman Sachs Weighs In on Social Impact Bonds

(RECAP: Ever since the United Kingdom matched private investments to social-problem solutions, the idea has been spreading like wildfire here in the U.S. Since 2012, social impact bond legislation has passed in fourteen states and the District of Columbia, and Harvard's Kennedy School has set up a Social Impact Bond Technical Assistance Lab.)

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