Inclusionary Housing Bill Gets Approval In Philadelphia

The Philadelphia city council has approved an inclusionary housing bill requiring developers to include a certain percentage of affordable housing in all projects of 20 units or more.

"Developers will be required to build affordable housing as part of every major residential project or contribute money toward that end under legislation City Council passed yesterday."

"A divided Council approved Councilman Darrell L. Clarke's inclusionary housing bill by a 12-5 vote, reflecting concerns raised by developers."

"The bill is a first for Philadelphia, and it gained the support of the Philadelphia Campaign for Housing Justice, a coalition of housing advocates."

"Although the law cannot go into effect until Council passes companion legislation offering incentives to builders who must bear the financial burden of the program, developers condemned the requirement as a potential death knell for residential construction."

"Developer John Westrum said the uncertainty of what those incentives would be - and how they would affect profitability - could prevent developers from obtaining the financing they need."

"'Its passing will have a profound, adverse effect on any developer trying to start any new project over 20 units,' Westrum said. 'Because the lending institution and lenders don't know what the outcome will be.'"

Full Story: Bill will require low-cost housing

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