June 17, 2015

Beyond Bricks and Sticks

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

Ideas, new and old, converging for housing opportunity

(RECAP: The effort to ramp up realistic approaches to the challenges of community affordability reached some sort of tipping point in the spring and summer of 2015. Get-‘er-done determination, inspired in part by the planning and building paralysis of the Great Recession, has helped spawn new urbanist sub-movements like Tactical Urbanism and more recently, Lean Urbanism.)

Three Reasons to Use Livability as a Vehicle for Sustainability

(RECAP: Understanding how livability relates to sustainability will help planners bridge the desires of residents in the present moment with longer-term needs associated with a sustainability vision.) 

Putting homeownership into perspective

(RECAP: We know stability, not owning vs. renting, is what matters most for children. We know there are ways to make homeownership stable and achievable for low-income families in growing neighborhoods. We know rental housing can be a platform for essential supportive services, such as those being used by veterans in need. And most of all, we know Americans are still struggling to afford stable housing, be it rented or owned.) 

Designing a City for the Deaf

(RECAP: Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., the leading institution for the deaf in the U.S., has released a set of DeafSpace Guidelines that could have an impact on urban development.)

Getting to the table early for green

(RECAP: Green means dollars and green means environmentally friendly. Affordable housing stakeholders in every state can pursue both goals by getting involved with state clean power plans.)

Opinions on Housing

The views and opinions expressed in Opinions on Housing are solely those of the original authors, and do not necessarily represent those of VHDA, our stakeholders or any/all contributors to this blog.

Should Rural Housing Be in HUD or Agriculture?

(RECAP: One of the issues for rural housing is clearly the need for capital —predevelopment financing, construction financing, gap funding and more — and that capital ought to come from the federal government, given the resource constraints of many small communities. However, figuring out just where the federal government is on rural housing is an analytical challenge for policy observers.)

The next president needs to speak up about housing right now

(RECAP: As the 2016 presidential campaign shifts into high gear, the candidates of both political parties must start speaking to the severe and growing problems in housing, and offer some clear-cut solutions.)

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