Vancouver, BC: ‘Hiving’ As A Resilient Affordable Housing Strategy

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Vancouver, BC is the least affordable city in North America, with a high proportion of households with low incomes compared to Canada as a whole. As well, it's a...

Hong Kong ‘Rats in a Cage:’ Affordable Problem Or Political Party Line?

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There have been hints that months of unrest and riots in Hong Kong have been triggered in part by the high cost of cramped housing in an overcrowded city. Is...

San Francisco’s First Safe Parking Lot for People Living in Vehicles Takes Step Forward

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Safely 'transitioning' homeless people from living in their vehicles is a praiseworthy long-term objective, one driving efforts to gain approval for a first San Francisco parking lot catering to...

Today’s Eye-roller: 4000 Sq Ft Lots Sporting ‘At-Market Affordable’ Homes

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From Manteca, California come tales of the hard lives of the middle and upper classes, together with the tribulations of the housing developers who serve them. Viewed from a...

Permanently Temporary: Sure Sign That Homelessness Solutions Are Becoming Part Of The Problem

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Cities in more advanced countries have made do for decades with handfuls of emergency shelters for the homeless, their number expanding in the winters of harsher climates. In many...

Copenhagen Housing Solution: Expand Once More Into The Sea

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Unaffordable? Affordable? Regardless of the kind of housing that needs to be built, running out of space to build it has emerged as a concern of many large cities. The...

Max Profit? Max Affordability? No Sale At All? Toronto City Debates Land Sell-Off.

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The City of Toronto has been suffering a predictable outcry when a federal crown corporation decided to sell off a parcel of Toronto waterfront land without requiring an affordable...

Affordable Housing Activists Eye England’s 216,000 Empty Houses

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A new study has emerged that indicates there are far more unsuitably housed people in the UK than previously thought. Read more in The Guardian: More Than 8 Million People...

UK Affordable Self-Build: Bootstrapping Your Own Shelter

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Living a precarious financial existence? One misstep away from homelessness? Join an growing club, as in many countries affordable housing just can't be found. So here's a question: can you...

Developer Pioneers UK Affordable Housing Shell Game

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This modular housingHouses, or components of houses, that are constructed at an off site factory and transported to their final destination. initiative intrigued and impressed us here at affordablehousingaction.org....

Affordable Shipping Container Housing: Comfy Microhomes Or Homeless Prison Cells?

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Quirky Architectural Think-Toy For an affordable housing solution? Or barely habitable concentration camp cage for homeless children? It would seem that shipping container housing can be both. Just as a pile...

A Road To Housing Affordability Can Lead Through Climate Change

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A scramble to protect ourselves and our environment from climate change will almost certainly spawn geographic and technological benefits that will can make housing more affordable. A recent article in...

A Growing Price To Pay for Trendy, Quirky Waterborne Housing

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A short time ago we explored with tongue in cheek a phenomena that supposedly originated in Thailand called 'seasteading'. It's hard to tell whether 'seasteading' — the idea of...

New Zealand Employee Affordable Housing Supplied By An Unusual Company Town

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Company towns have a special relationship with their citizens. They are usually, though not always, born out of necessity: their remote location. Why create a town in the middle of...

Protecting Vancouver’s Affordable Renting: Some Alternatives

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Two important factors are influencing rental housing in cities across North America. The 'millennial' age group is now facing the lifetime challenge of finding employment and shelter. The average millennial...

Topsy Turvy San Jose Neighbours: Prioritizing Car Shelter Over People Shelter

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It's nice to imagine that somewhere in the world, a group of concerned neighbours might get together to protest a new parking lot, on the grounds that the extra...

Zombie Properties: What are They? What Are Their Affordable Housing Benefits.

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Don't you really want to know what a zombie property is? We confess that we did. A mobile haunted house perhaps, decaying, dilapidated, lurching down the street late at...

Institutionalizing Homelessness: Bangor, Maine, Hands Out Tents

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On one hand "Make India Great" is coming close to providing true housing for an entire population of one and a third billion over a span of 7 years.Try:...

Upzoning in America: A Map View of City Density Informs Future Housing Choices

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Urban sprawl is beginning to receive a technical analysis that threatens its existence. It is the very foundation of the so-called 'American Dream'— a single house on a single...

Revisiting The City Of Boulder’s Co-op Housing Ordinance

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Two years ago, after a two year process, the City of Boulder approved by a vote of 7-2 an ordinance to allow housing co-operatives as dwelling units. Opponents felt...

YIGBY: What Does It Stand For? Will It Catch On?

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Just a quicky . . . Seems it's the silly season for acronyms. The latest is YIGBY. To get the full flavour of this new affordable housing acronym, you may wish to work up to it by reviewing your knowledge of:

Spokane Police Scratch Own/Community Back By Dabbling In Affordable Housing Biz

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Headline: Spokane Police To Turn 5 West Central Nuisance Homes Into Affordable Housing. Nuisance homes: one way of describing derelict, abandoned buildings that become crash pads for drug use and...

20-20-20 Vision: Screw The Carrot. Montreal Brings The Stick To Affordable Housing.

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Forget tempting financial carrots to coax developers into supporting affordable housing. Montreal, Quebec is planning to bring the big stick to multiple housing developments in the city. Incumbent mayor Mayor...

Best And Highest Use: Disposal of Historic Buildings For Profit Or For Community?

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‘Best and highest use', it seems, is a land use appraisal term. Putting it bluntly into a financial context, it means ‘selling for maximum bucks.’ The term reflects a dilemma...

Affordable Housing Wars: True ‘YIMBY’ Can Outflank NIMBY

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By all means, let's hear it for true YIMBY. Hold that thought. We'll be coming back to it. True YIMBY? Does that mean there's a fake YIMBY? Of course there...

Does A High Density Planet Demand High Density Housing?

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Rabbits, it might be said, can't breed fast enough to keep up with humans. Look at our world population increasing by the billions. Even in Australia, where rabbits are...

NYC Plans To Shoehorn Affordable Housing Onto Teeny Quirky Lots

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What do you put on a triangular handkerchief of city land that has been vacant for decades? If New York City finds the right design, it will be affordable...

Housing Vs. Environment: Early Skirmishes Signal All-Out Battle To Come

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Consider the American housing sector, together with its political and activist support, which is concerned with building both market rate and affordable housing. Needless to say, it prefers to...

Affordable Housing That Physically Embraces History: Could It Work

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Ongoing celebration of a city often turns on the preservation of old, smallish buildings that served a unique role in the community's history. When entire buildings cannot be saved,...

Hedgehogs: Nobody Else Is Hogging That Space, Why Not Affordable Housing?

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Municipalities world-wide are betting on increased density, via a wide range of construction projects and zoning re-regulation, in order to create more affordable housing. A Swedish architectural firm is...

Affordable Flood Plains: A Stilted Conversation

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With so many towns and cities built close to rivers, or close to coasts, why do we hear little or nothing about municipalities eyeing land on flood plains for...

Flex-Space: What Is It? What Application Could It Have For Affordable Housing?

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Flex space usually refers to room within buildings that might be used for multiple purposes: an office/bedroom/den in a house, a light manufacturing unit/wholesale outlet/call centre in an industrial...

Heart-stopping Skylight Living Under Runways & Other Transport Corridor Affordable Housing Options

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Gaze upwards through the reinforced skylight of your condo high-rise tower, one that has been tipped to the horizontal and is buried under a major airport runway. The sky...

Let’s Hear It For The Hulks: Affordable Housing At Sea, Cruising To Nowhere In Particular

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Question for cruise affectionados: where do you get to enjoy the sea air, the company of hundreds if not thousands, guarantee of no waves large enough cause motion sickness,...

Does Doom For Box Stores Become A Boom For Affordable Housing?

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These are not easy times for big box store realtors. Some of the biggest users of box store space are switching to Amazon and other buy-from-your living-room internet retailers. The...

Buckingham Palace As Social Housing: Shades of the Russian Revolution?

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An international architectural magazine with slightly dubious design senseCheck out the article link. All lower case. Really? Surely this is publishing art as an exercise in obscurity, not clarity....

Minneapolis Drives A Stake Into The Heart Of The American Dreamscape

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In a remarkably lopsided Council decision, Minneapolis, Minnesota has made American history by shafting detached-house zoning in every city neighbourhood, even the most upscale and exclusive. This comprehensive decision is...

L.A. Explores ‘Boarding School’ For Entire Homeless Families

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The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) is considering a profoundly generous and undoubtedly controversial way of fulfilling its mandate to provide education for all children and youth, regardless...

Planning Permission Dragging On? Paris Developers Donate ‘Meanwhile’ Space

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In spite of affordable housing being an urgent crisis in many nations, there remain major, perhaps unavoidable, delays in approving property development, whether it includes affordable housing or not. Zoning...

Gentrification Has Killed Shared Housing. Affordability May Bring it Back, Complete With Benefits

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In Toronto, Ontario, shared housing hangs on stubbornly, like weeds in a well-kept lawn. Rooming houses, boarding houses, single room occupancy hotels and other forms of shared accommodation are...

The Many Colors of NIMBY: Somewhere Between Sparse And Clogged, Our Density Is To Die For

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NIMBY: Not in My Back Yard. Part of an ongoing collection of articles exploring some of the many ways that a worldwide affordable housing crisis is opposed.

Canada’s NICE May Need A Naughtier Affordable Housing Project

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In the spirit of its 'NICE' acronym, Canada's National Initiative for the Care of the Elderly is embarking on an admirable and extremely ambitious affordable housing initiative. The charitable...

ADUs — We Need To Be Reasonable. But Granny Reasonable? Or Affordable Housing Reasonable?

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Some homeowners actually want to install their granny (or an insufferable teenager or two) in a tastefully tiny house at the foot of the garden. For those kinds of...

How Library Systems Can Help Address Affordable Housing Crises

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Increasing density seems the only option for building affordable housing in the downtown core of many cities. Even smaller homes in higher towers may only temporarily be affordable, if...

Downsizing (Or Should It Be ‘Resizing’?) The American Dream

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The postwar housing boom that brought Norman Rockwell's idealized America to a ring of suburbs around every North American city was not built upon 2000-3000 sq ft. ranch houses...

India’s Affordable Housing Pledge Pinched By Lack Of Urban Space

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Can you imagine your own government pledging affordable housing for everyone in the country within a decade? Could such an undertaking be undertaken in that time frame, even in...
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