As the housing crisis intensifies, citizen activists will have to play a greater role in communicating with public officials. It’s impossible to foresee every conceivable proposal, but the following are some important points to consider when determining whether to support or oppose an initiative.
- Does the project meet the minimum inclusionary rates? Look for at least 15% for very low income units or 20% for low income units. See the definitions page if you’re not sure what this means.
- Has the developer worked with the community to resolve their concerns? Not all of the resistance to affordable housing comes from the anti-growth point of view. Infrastructure improvement might be required. The design may be totally out of character with other structures nearby. The developer of Fox Point Farms spent months working with neighbors to address their concerns, and in the end, won overwhelming approval.
- Is the developer making any effort to reach out to predominantly BIPOC communities to notify residents about the project? Will they advertise affordable housing opportunities in Spanish?
- Is the project near mass transit stations? If not, is the developer providing shuttle services to reach them?
- Are the affordable units protected by deed restrictions? Again, see the definitions page if you’re not sure what this means.