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Opinion: Even Wealthy Counties Can Make Space for Affordable Housing

Bergen County, New Jersey offers a case study in overcoming decades of illegal and exclusionary zoning practices.
October 28, 2017, 9am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Rev. Gregory Jackson argues in an op-ed that Bergen County, New Jersey—one of the wealthiest counties in the United States. "Municipalities in the county helped secure this status by implementing exclusionary zoning practices that drove hard working families out of these towns – and by doing so, they helped create an affordable housing crisis," writes Rev. Jackson.

Rev. Jackson has noticed a sea change in Bergen County, however, "as more and more Bergen County towns are now taking proactive steps to expand fair housing opportunities." Many of these actions are the results of hard-fought legal actions, but there is reason to be less cynical. According to Rev. Jackson, "145 towns across the state who have signed fair-housing agreements to transition into an inclusive style of planning and zoning."

The remainder of the op-ed takes a closer look at the downtown redevelopment of the towns located in Bergen County.

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Published on Tuesday, October 17, 2017 in NorthJersey.com
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