Friday, October 13, 2017

Atlanta: "Becoming a San Francisco, city for the wealthy"

san francisco
Reuters/Noah Berger
If you need numbers to prove affordable housing is an issue for Atlanta, you’ll get them from Georgia State professor Dan Immergluck.

He’s analyzed rents.“Over the last three years, we’ve seen rents in many neighborhoods go up 15 percent, 20 percent,” Immergluck said. “Some neighborhoods 40, 45 percent.” 

He’s followed the cost of homes: “Housing prices in the city, not near the Atlanta BeltLine, have gone up 30 percent,” from 2011-2015, he said. “Near the BeltLine, 50-55 percent.”

And he’s reviewed census data, showing over a four-year period, “the city lost over 5,000 rental units that rent for less than $750 a month.”

Immergluck can also tell you what makes these numbers pressing. 

Atlanta, he said, doesn’t have the policies to address them, like requirements for developers to build affordable units. 

“If we don’t develop those affordable housing strategies, eventually we run the risk of becoming a San Francisco,” he said. In other words, a city for the wealthy. 

Chuck Young, a developer with Prestwick Companies, doesn’t disagree. He’s seen the demand to get into one of his affordable housing developments: “For our three-bedroom units, we have a 400-family waiting list. And if I had anywhere else to send them, I would. It just doesn’t exist,” Young said.

His company can build low-cost units by using state tax credits. But he said those programs are few.

Meanwhile, construction costs have soared. “Right now, if I just went and bought a piece of property, to develop that property, you’re looking at $1,300 a month,” Young said. “And that’s as cheap as you can deliver right now.” 

To lower the rent, he said, developers will need help from the city in the form of subsidies or property tax breaks.

That is going to take money and — both Immergluck and Young acknowledge — some political will (emphasis added).

Thanks to Planetizen.



At 10:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Atlanta, learn from SF. We stopped gentrification and so can you.

At 12:01 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Hardly. In reality gentrification here is accelerating.

At 2:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If only we could gentrify you out Rob.

At 2:14 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Please explain exactly why you want to see that


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