Land Trusts Holding Ground for Affordable Housing in Pittsburgh

Community land trusts are facing an uphill battle as waves of gentrification reach new neighborhoods around Pittsburgh.
February 11, 2016, 2pm PST | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Diana Nelson Jones reports on the efforts to preserve affordable housing in the neighborhoods of Pittsburgh experiencing a wave of investment and revitalization. The tool of choice in this effort: community land trusts. Nelson Jones the details the work of community land trusts in the neighborhoods of East Liberty, Lawrenceville, and Oakland.

For instance, the "Lawrenceville Corp. has just launched a land trust to buy properties to keep in the hands of moderate-income families with each resale. It is starting with seven targeted properties in Upper Lawrenceville, the last section to feel the market.

Then there is the work of the Oakland Planning and Development Corp., a non-profit that "owns and manages 80 low-income units and hopes to build 25 more that are accessible on land it bought on Wadsworth Street in West Oakland."

Finally, East Liberty Development "rents 32 scattered units to Section 8 voucher holders, owns an 83-unit building it wants to renovate and enlarge to about 200 units, 20 percent for low-income people, and runs a 41-unit building for low-income residents. It also offers housing for 26 disabled and otherwise homeless people."

The article includes a lot more details about how those land trusts are responding to the pressures of a quickly changing market.

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Published on Monday, February 1, 2016 in Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
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