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After Scrutiny Regarding Affordable Housing Policy, Emanuel Proposes New Chicago Department of Housing

Chicago's current housing policies aren't protecting or producing affordable housing in gentrifying areas, so Mayor Rahm Emanuel is proposing a restructuring of the government. Advocates are skeptical of the idea.
June 26, 2018, 2pm PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Bernt Rostad

"Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration on Monday proposed creating a new city department to focus on affordable housing, an election-season move officials said would sharpen the city’s efforts on the issue," report Gregory Pratt and Jeff Coen.

The proposed Chicago Department of Housing "would be responsible for implementing Emanuel’s strategy, and the mayor’s office said he will call on a steering and advisory committee 'to create a new and transformative vision for housing, and the new department will reflect that vision.'" The city had a housing department until 2009, when it was consolidated into the umbrella of the planning department.

According to the article, housing advocates are skeptical about Mayor Emanuel's proposal, citing a lack of trust.

The mayor's announcement also follows just a day after another article by Pratt and Coen scrutinizing the mayor's 2015 Affordable Requirements Ordinance, which is essentially inclusionary zoning. "A Tribune review of city records shows that the number of affordable residences built is running below City Hall projections by some measures, and the fees paid by many developers to fund affordable housing have been mostly steered away from gentrifying neighborhoods," according to that article.

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