Affordable Housing Initiatives
Chambers are needed to help meet the challenges of housing affordability for workers and retirees. Affordable housing is critical to workers' quality of life, as well as to the ability of employers to expand and grow, and to a community's ability to attract new businesses. When employees are able to live close to their place of work, families, employers, local businesses (in the form of revenues from the local workforce), and cities and towns (by experiencing reduced traffic and a more cohesive community) all benefit.
Award-Winning Chamber Examples
- Asheville Area Chamber (NC) has identified housing as a critical community need:
- Launched a Regional Housing Needs Survey.
- Promoted a 2016 bond issue to create more affordable housing in Asheville which passed Nov. 2016.
- Launched a 2017 study that confirmed the need for affordable housing and studio space for artists and creatives in Asheville. The Preliminary Feasibility Report confirms that an "affordable artist, live/work, mixed use facility should be explored as a priority creative space development model in Asheville." The report recommends a future phase to test feasibility and pre-development.
- Athens Area Chamber (GA) helped develop a regional workforce housing study.
- Calgary Chamber (ALB) has fought to ensure an adequate supply of rental housing in the city.
- Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce (NC):
- The Lancaster Chamber of Commerce & Industry (PA) has an Affordable Housing Initiative which created the "Lancaster County Housing Market Analysis and Needs Study" that is described and included in the Chamber's Prosperity Indicators Report and the Chamber has adopted a policy position that "supports the development of projects, zoning and regulation reform that provides affordable housing contributing to the overall well-being of people and the County."
- The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce responded to the Affordable Housing Linkage Fee, which would make it more expensive to build, buy or rent a home in L.A.
- Orange County Business Council (CA): Securing Orange County's Future through Advancing Housing Initiatives Campaign (2016 ACE Award of Excellence Winner). The chamber's focus on distributing info (via scorecard and educational video) to the community and elected officials at chamber, town hall, and city council meetings (because local officials have the most immediate impact on workforce housing) has led to a successful vote by the Mission Viejo City Council to increase housing.
- The Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce (VA) supported the efforts of the Partnership for Housing Affordability to create a 2015 study on Housing the Richmond Region, which defined the housing affordability gap and the identified needs for affordable housing across all income levels.
- San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce (CA) participated in a workforce housing summit.
- Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association (CO) participated in a 2016 housing steering committee that assessed the needs. In Fall 2017, there was a campaign to institute a property tax to fund affordable housing projects. This article, Election 2017: 5A promises to bring new era of affordable housing to Steamboat area is on the proposed tax, which passed.
- Vail Valley Partnership (CO) "has identified affordable housing as our number one strategic priority area," owing to its effect on business growth and community sustainability. The Chamber is encouraging public and private partners to identify opportunities and needs through VVP's Workforce Housing Coalition meetings for overall efforts to improve the county's Affordable Workforce Housing.
See more chamber examples related to affordable housing
Community Land Trusts
- Affordable Housing, Always - by Alana Samuels, The Atlantic (July 6, 2015)
- National Community Land Trust Network - Provides research, advocacy, education, and support for its member organizations that nurture and sustain healthy and economically diverse communities by providing permanently affordable access to land, homes, and community assets.
Articles & Reports
- Affordable Housing Finance - Content from Affordable Housing Finance and Apartment Finance Today magazines
- Affordable Housing Resource Center - From Novogradac & Company LLP
- How Housing Matters - Resource center from the MacArthur Foundation. Explores the notion that affordable housing is an essential component of positive outcomes in education, employment, and physical and mental health, among other areas.
- Can Affordable Housing Solve the Farmworker Shortage? - by Tim Anderson, Stateline (January 5, 2017)
- JP Morgan Commits to Helping Urban Neighborhoods - by Alex Daniels, Chronicle of Philanthropy (April 2016)
- 2016 Housing Agency Waiting Lists and the Demand for Housing Assistance, Research Spotlight Report by Public and Affordable Housing Research Coporation (PAHRC) - Federal programs provide homes for about 5 million families nationwide, but that’s only a fraction of the people who are trying to receive assistance according to this report and demonstrates the need for greater resources for housing across the nation (Feb. 2016).
- "Granny cottages" growing in Denver after 2010 city zoning change - by Joe Vaccarelli, Denver Post (January 2016). The city's new zoning codes took effect in 2010 that, in part, allowed for more accessory dwelling units, commonly referred to as "granny flats" or cottage houses. They were added to the zoning code to give more options for people to move in family members such as elder parents, or for seniors to perhaps move in a caretaker and still maintain a private residence.
- Why Affordable Housing is Good for Business - Blog post from the Alexandria (VA) Chamber presents the case that affordable housing promotes economic growth. (October 14, 2015)
- In Downtown Revitalization, Equity Can Equal Authenticity - by Oscar Perry Abello, Next City (December 14, 2015)
- If You Build Affordable Housing for Teachers, Will They Come? - by Jess Clark, National Public Radio (December 8, 2015)
- (Re)Building Downtown: A Guidebook for Revitalization (cited in Next City article) - Smart Growth America (December 2015)
- American Housing Policy's Two Basic Ideas Pull Cities In Opposite Directions - by Daniel Hertz, The Atlantic (October 14, 2015)
- The Two Sides of Denver's Real Estate Boom - by Robert Sanchez, 5280 Magazine (October 2015)
- Health Impact Assessment of the 2015 Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-income Housing Tax Credits in Georgia - Addresses how the state’s allocation of housing credits can be strengthened to support health-promoting affordable housing developments. (September 2015)
- Building Cities for People - Chapman University Center for Demographics and Policy (2015)
Related Chamberpedia Topics
| Economic and Community Development
| Affordable Housing InitiativesLast Updated: 2/9/2018