Census Bureau Serves Both Sides of the Housing Debate

The Census Bureau wants to be a friend to YIMBYs and NIMBYs alike.
June 12, 2018, 8am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Olin Viydo

A post on the U.S. Census Bureau Website written by Nesreen Khashan and Lia Bolden attempts to bridge the gap of controversy separating YIMBY from NIMBY in the contemporary housing debate.

"Census Bureau demographic, housing and socioeconomic data, as well as building permit and employment statistics, have become essential tools in housing movements, whether it’s YIMBY or NIMBY," according to the article.

The post begins with an anecdote about Victoria Fierce, a leading voice for the YIMBY movement in California and founder of East Bay For Everyone. The next anecdote examines the advocacy career of Michael Tsai, a member of South Bay YIMBY. Throughout the article's attention to YIMBY politics, Census data resources are referenced to describe the state of the housing market in the San Francisco Bay Area.

The article also discusses the benefits of Census data to established homeowners, (i.e., " existing homeowner and civic associations use data to promote appealing neighborhood features, YIMBYs rely on data to demonstrate that housing supply has lagged demand"), but doesn't allow the same kind of page space to allow homeowners or the leaders of slow growth organizations to support their case.

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Published on Thursday, May 31, 2018 in United States Census Bureau
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