2:Control the land ✓
3: De-regulate ✓
Part 4: Develop and Finance
Ambitious goals to meet! So, there’s no time to lose! It’s time to build!
Politicians like to think that low interest mortgages, tax deferral schemes, first-time home buyer plans, and high ratio mortgages help make housing more affordable. All of this political candy just leads to increased demand! Increased demand drives prices higher!
Stimulating supply is more difficult than giving popular handouts to individual taxpayers . With no voter payola, it requires political courage to promote development. Deregulation reduces costs for planning and land carry. Up-zoning allows for increased housing density. Both of tactics accelerate private development. In turn, this should speed up receipt of Targeted Housing development fees.
I have made the case for municipally owned and controlled land banks . Authorities should devote government subsidies and Targeted Housing development fees to:
Targeted Housing means social, affordable, and family housing
Up-zoning or to up-zone is the process of increasing zoning density, typically to allow multi-family units to be built on residential lots.
What comes to mind when I say affordable housing? The banlieues in Paris? Tower blocks in London? Ghettos for low income families? Postal codes and street addresses should not be indicators of financial means. Targeted Housing Mixed projects should be everywhere. Mixed income neighbourhoods are more vibrant and make for safer cities.
Contrary to popular opinion, high-rise development is not the answer to the housing crisis. These projects are longer in planning, pre-development, and construction. The long development cycles cause supply to consistently trail demand. And, when this happens prices continue to increase.
Ideally, there should be a mix of building types with different production cycles. I would focus on projects ready for occupancy within 24 months or less from the start of construction. This link to Architect Daily shows sixty examples of social housing projects around the world.
“High-rise towers, concrete towers that have to go four storeys underground and take five, six years to build, they’re higher-risk developments and they’re very expensive, so we have to try and figure out how to do infill cheaply and get as many properties built as possible.”Ben Myers, Bullpen Research and Consulting Inc.
Project development and ownershipcan take many forms:
There are different structural issues and options related to each form of development and ownership. I will address these in a future issue.
Housing affordability and shortages! Homelessness and tent villages! These issues dominate the headlines. There is consensus that housing supply has not kept up with demand caused by immigration and new household formation. The need is urgent. It is time to stop talking. It’s time to build.
Lisbon’s seven hills and waterfront make it visually spectacular. The second oldest capital in Europe, the city has energy. Busy streets and squares, full restaurants, and vibrant night life – the city pulsates. And, the population seems young. All signs of a city on the rise? Earthquake A 1755 earthquake destroyed 85% of the city […]
People living on the street have come to symbolize the global housing crisis but they are only the tip of the iceberg. While the examples of Finland and Houston demonstrate a focussed plan pursued diligently can resolve the housing situation for the chronically homeless, addressing the affordable housing problem is much more complex. Defining Affordability […]
I love to dance. This is not something new for me. I can’t remember when I didn’t like to move to the music. My first memories of watching others dance come from my childhood in Cape Breton where I would watch the adults square dance. Then, there were the step dancers who would often accompany […]
Kings Cross, once a thriving industrial and transport centre in London, was effectively closed off to the public by the end of the 20th century. Then in 1996, the decision was made to move the British terminus for the Channel Tunnel Rail Link from Waterloo to St-Pancras. The landowner saw a re-development opportunity for […]
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A Visit from Saint Nicholas A Poem by Jonathan Potter – December 2022 ‘Twas the first mask-free Christmas, when all through the stores The vaccinated children were spewing their spores;The shoppers were eagerly starting to riotAs the introverts longed for some quarantine quiet. The public healthcare workers were tracing the pathOf the flu and RSV, […]