At a recent conference, Not In My Back Yard (NIMBY) advocates have been given a preview of the ultimate NIMBY solution.
Up until now, NIMBY protesters have voiced their opposition to incoming affordable housing projects by
- hoping that a project involving an invading army of down-and-outs will not threaten at the gates of the neighbourhood
- choosing one or more reasons the proposed project will destroy the neighbourhood, e.g. parking congestion, destruction of neighbourhood ‘character,’ a depraved class of incomers, etc. and
- using those reasons to fight tooth and nail at the local municipal approval committee stage.
At a Bloomington, Illinois housing conference, attendees are learning there is a much more efficient and proactive way:
- redefining the term ‘affordable’ to focus on exactly the kind of affordability that is defined by the income bracket of your current neighbours and their homes, and
- seeking out projects featuring ‘folks just like you’
- welcoming them to the neighbourhood with open arms.
No municipal committee stonewalling required!
Who knew that urban affordable housing solutions could be so simple!
For more head scratching ideas from Bloomington, read the following article at WBCU.org: Housing Matters: Affordable Housing And The Middle Class