Housing Forum: Innovations and Evolutions in Affordable Housing
By George S. Burgan
From Atlanta to Alpharetta, Cobb to Clayton, DeKalb to Douglas — every community in our metro is struggling to meet the housing needs of low- and moderate-income families. And while the economy booms for some, the impediments to financing and building affordable housing remain the same as always. If we are going to meet the housing needs of our communities, innovative approaches to creating affordable housing will have to be advanced to allow us to go over, under, around and through those barriers.
To that end, community development stakeholders around the region are working to address housing inequities on many fronts – introducing technology to harness the shared economy; building smaller with innovative materials and models, creating new cross-sector partnerships, leveraging enterprise capital, and acting on new Federal program opportunities.
Some of these efforts are just emerging, some are evolving right before our eyes, while still others are proving to be truly innovative. Many of these solutions are emerging from the private sector, responding to the tremendous housing need while recognizing the limitations of public subsidy. At the next Atlanta Regional Housing Forum, we will examine these opportunities.
Innovations in Development Financing – In our first of two panel conversations, our experts will dive into private and public development financing models, private-sector partnerships, access to enterprise capital, the community land trust model, and other efforts to increase the scale of development.
Evolutions in Design & Development of Affordable Housing – Our second of two panel conversations will highlight: the use of technology to leverage the shared economy movement; progress in the tiny home movement and adoption of accessory dwelling unit strategies; and increasing interest in modular homes. We’ll hear from developers about the tools of the trade and how they are evolving each day.
How can we meet more of the housing need by embracing these and other innovations? HouseATL recommendations, if fully executed, could spark housing sector innovations in development, financing, compliance, zoning and more. We’ve recently seen the City of Atlanta’s Affordable Housing Action Plan take the next step on many of these recommendations – including the creation a Housing Innovations Lab. The City also took a major step forward with revisions to code to allow accessory dwelling units (ADUs) in formerly single-family detached districts. And both Clarkston and Ball Ground have are developing tiny home communities. How are other jurisdictions embracing these innovations and evolutions.
Join us as we discuss these important topics on Wednesday, September 4 at the Atlanta Regional Housing Forum at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 435 Peachtree St NE, Atlanta, GA 30308.
Register online: www.AtlantaRegionalHousingForum.org
(Pictured above: “The Cottages on Vaughn,” a planned tiny home community in Clarkston. Image courtesy of MicroLife Institute)