Affordable Housing : Makin’ Do With What Y’all Already Got

Downtown view of Rochester, Minnesota
IMG_6055 (Rochester, Minnesota) photo by Ken Marshall is licensed under CC BY 2.0
Rochester, Minnesota: a town with existing affordable housing. How long will it last?

In North America, some cities and towns have yet to absorb the full onslaught of gentrification. However, that spectre looms on the horizon everywhere, particularly in light of climate change worries that favour measures such as walking to work, play or shopping, rather than driving.

Communities without gentrification may be blessed with ‘naturally occurring’ affordable housing. So why not try to preserve it? This obvious solution often seems to entirely escape, or at least elude, well meaning city councils.

Some cities are well aware of the need to preserve properties (or have affordable development designs of their own). They simply lack the resources to compete with private sector developers.1

Fortunately, some non-profits are prepared to tackle the daunting task of preserving naturally affordable land and housing. For one such example, read more in Minnesota’s POSTBULLETIN: First Homes Plans Apartment Purchase


  1. Read just such a rueful admission by Atlanta, Georgia officials during an information session in the satellite city of Sandy Springs: Sandy Springs Talks Affordable Housing And Atlanta Beltline.