The city of Philadelphia launched a height and density bonus in 2018 to create incentives for the development of affordable housing, but so far the results have proven underwhelming.
"Philadelphia City Council on Thursday overwhelmingly passed a bill that backers hope will encourage developers to build more affordable housing units in desirable areas," reports Aaron Moselle.
The bill tweaks the city's voluntary Mixed-Income Housing Bonus program, launched in 2018, which has so far underperformed expectations. The program "allows developers to construct larger buildings than allowed under zoning regulations if they agree to build affordable housing units or contribute to the city’s Housing Trust Fund," according to Moselle. "The fund provides money for new affordable homes, as well as the preservation and repair of existing homes."
"Since launching, the program has resulted in developers building fewer than two dozen affordable housing units, with the majority of developers who got the so-called bonuses to build extra floors or floor space opting to contribute to the trust fund instead of building on site," adds Moselle.
The bill's modification to the program will allow developers allow developers of smaller projects (i.e., less than ten units) to be granted mixed-use bonuses of height and density if they build affordable housing on site.
"The measure also includes a provision designed to encourage the preservation of active commercial corridors. That provision bars developers from getting a mixed-use bonus if they are also getting a zoning variance for residential use in a ground-floor commercial space."
More details on the new ordinance and the existing program are included in the source article. A soundbite by Mo Rushdy, the treasurer of the Building Industry Association, expressing skepticism that the bill will achieve the expected benefit for affordable housing in the city, is also included.
Arizona’s ‘Car-Free’ Community Takes Shape
Culdesac Tempe has been welcoming residents since last year.
4 Ways to Use AI in Urban Planning and City Design
With the ability to predict trends, engage citizens, enhance resource allocation, and guide decision-making, artificial intelligence has the potential to serve as planners’ very own multi-tool.
Oregon Town Seeks Funding for Ambitious Resilience Plan
Like other rural communities, Grants Pass is eager to access federal funding aimed at sustainability initiatives, but faces challenges when it comes to meeting grant requirements.
How Infrastructure Communicates Values
The presence and quality of sidewalks, curb cuts, and other basic elements of infrastructure can speak to much more than just economic decisions.
Despite High Ridership, Intercity Bus Lines Are Eliminating Stations
Riders on the ‘forgotten stepchild’ of the U.S. transportation system find themselves waiting for buses curbside as Greyhound sells off its real estate in many U.S. cities.
Buffalo Residents Push Back on Proposed Cap Park
State and local officials say the $1 billion project will heal neighborhoods divided by the Kensington Expressway, but community members say the proposed plan will exacerbate already poor air quality in the area.
City of Laramie, Wyoming
Colorado Department of Local Affairs
Lassen County Planning and Building Services
This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.