"For years, New York City has tried to create more affordable housing by encouraging developers to include apartments for low- and middle-income households in return for being allowed to construct bigger buildings," writes Mireya Navarro. "But a new report by the office of City Councilman Brad Lander, a Brooklyn Democrat and housing expert, says that that strategy is producing too few affordable units and that the city should require developers to build more of them. "
"Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and the real estate industry have favored the exchange of more density for affordable set-asides on a voluntary basis," she adds. "But affordable housing advocates and some mayoral candidates argue that the time has come for mandatory programs to make a dent in the housing shortage for low-income New Yorkers."
“'It’s a moment of crisis,' said Mr. Lander, an advocate for low-income housing and a former director of the Pratt Center for Community Development, a policy and planning group. 'People are desperate for affordability, and there’s a mismatch between the anxiety people have and the policy tools that are available.'”