July 8, 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.

Placemaking Street Banners Installed in Tysons

(RECAP: Banners won’t solve all of Tysons problems, but adding some design depth and contrast to what is, in many places, a concrete and asphalt canyon, helps soften the neighborhood and give it a sense of place.)

Your Community’s Little Instruction Book: The basics of putting together a comprehensive plan.

(RECAP: The comprehensive plan has a critical role: it establishes the intent and goals of the community. Too many communities that haven’t fully utilized their comprehensive plans as their guide when making important decisions get themselves into real trouble when making decisions not grounded on what’s set out in their plan.)

Boomers Push Developers to Innovate

(RECAP: Unlike their parents, who may have downsized to resort-style homes or assisted living, this demographic is pressing developers to offer new, multi-housing options as they age. And with their 18-year age span stretching from 51 to 69, boomers naturally don’t represent a one-size-fits-all target market.)

For Individuals With Disabilities, There's No Place(ment) Like Home

(RECAP: Individuals with disabilities and advocates have been fighting for thoughtful supports, inclusion in communities and independent living since the 1960s "based on the premise that people with even the most severe disabilities should have the choice of living in the community." The challenge isn't new, but the solutions will need to be.)

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.

Reframing Government’s—And Our Own—Role in Affordable Housing

(RECAP: Clearly, there is work to do to educate the public about the positive impact government at all levels can have in ensuring access to affordable housing. Introducing housing affordability with values based messages can help bridge this divide.)

3 Fixes For America’s Urban Housing Crunch

(RECAP: Congested American cities should examine the menu of options for expanding housing availability, including transit improvements; legalizing denser construction wherever it is politically possible; and legalizing "micro-units" for students, young singles and seniors.)


The Ripple Effects of Having a Stable Home

(RECAP: Housing often gets left off the agenda in conversations about vital social issues, even though continued research indicates that safe and decent shelter is critical for family and community health. But more industries outside the housing arena are beginning to take notice of the ripple effects of having a stable home.)

Five Ways Alternative Data Can Expand Credit Access

(RECAP: It’s important that Congress provide affirmative permission to add on-time utility and telecommunications payment data to credit reports and scores. This would open up credit, housing and employment opportunities for tens of millions of Americans and make our current credit system more inclusive and accurate.)

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