News and Commentary
An article by The Wall Street Journal editorial board praises the Trump Administration’s recent efforts to roll back a federal housing regulation that was meant to combat residential segregation. The editorial board claims the rule was “lawless” and that it unnecessarily federalized local planning decisions.
Patrick Sisson writes in Bloomberg CityLab about the COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on affordable housing in the U.S. While the crisis has generated many headlines about a forthcoming wave of evictions and homelessness, less attention has been paid to the pandemic’s long-term effect on affordable housing supply. As Sisson puts it, there is “a brutal convergence of factors” happening right now as budget shortfalls hamstring housing subsidies, construction slowdowns and materials shortages make ongoing projects more expensive, and financial pressures on affordable housing landlords increase.
In a report from the Brookings Institution, Michael Bailey, Eric LaRose, and Jenny Schuetz examine solutions to help cost-burdened renters in Washington, D.C. in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and recession.
Gretchen Brown writes in Rewire about how discussions of “neighborhood character” can reinforce structural racism. She asks, “what counts as ‘neighborhood character,’ and who gets to define it?” and finds that so often it’s wealthy white homeowners who have lived in an area for decades. This form of exclusionary zoning can perpetuate segregation and artificially limit the supply of housing in an area.
Sanjida Rangwala writes in the blog Greater Greater Washington about the common thread of NIMBYism that connects President Donald Trump, some prominent Democratic politicians, and local housing opponents.
Taylor Haggerty reports for Ideastream about a new study that was recently presented at the Cleveland City Council. The study found that tax abatements are increasingly being concentrated in specific neighborhoods in the city, exacerbating the city’s fragile housing market.
A working paper from Evan Mast of the Upjohn Institute finds that when a municipality switches from at-large to district-based representation on a municipal council, the supply of new housing stock decreases.
A policy brief from the Terner Center for Housing Innovation at UC Berkeley examines a recent bill proposed in the California State Senate that seeks to reform single-family zoning in the state.