Wednesday, June 24, 2009

DC Receives Stimulus Funds for Affordable Housing


The District’s Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) announced yesterday that their application to the Department of the Treasury for American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds has been granted. As a result, the District will be on the receiving end of some $33.7 million worth of stimulus funds that will, in the words of DHCD, "spur the continued development of affordable housing units."

"This new stimulus funding will have an immediate and critical impact on the development and rehabilitation of affordable housing in the District of Columbia. It will help us move forward with affordable housing projects, and it will generate much needed jobs for District residents,” said Mayor Adrian Fenty via press release.

More surprising than the grant its self was the quick turn around on DHCD’s application, which was filed less than two weeks ago on June 9th. However, per the terms of the quickie federal payout, the District has agreed to receive the lump sum grant “to finance construction or acquisition and rehabilitation of…low-income housing in lieu of low-income tax credits.”

DHCD Director Leila Edmonds didn’t specify which projects would be receiving the federal monies, only stating that “funds like these are especially necessary in this difficult financing market.” Probable recipients, however, are likely to include the soon-to-be redeveloped Park Morton public housing complex and the long in-the-works 1600 unit Northwest One development. Expect the subject of the latter to be broached at next month’s meeting of the City Council’s Committee on Economic Development, where the project will be subject to disposition approval resolutions.

6 comments:

Dard4 said...

Oh, now THAT will stimulate the economy. Let's choose to believe that the laws of supply and demand don't work here, and that building further government dependency won't create further government dependence, while justifying an increased welfare state as a "stimulating" force on the economy. Not what I voted for.

Urban Architect on Jun 25, 2009, 1:23:00 PM said...

Just and FYI Dard4, affordable housing doesn't necessarily mean "projects". Technically it means dwellings whose total housing costs are deemed affordable to those that have a median income. Often times "affordable" is applied to rental housing that is within the financial means of those in the lower income ranges, however, its really applicable to all income ranges, especially in a city like DC where you can make $50,000/yr and be considered low income. Even if we are talking about projects that used to be geared only towards section 8, I am under the impression that all of these developments will be mixed income, meaning we won't be building another sursum corda or barry farm. But perhaps DCMUD can shed some light.

Chad3337 said...

The problem with all of these new "mixed use" developments is that they don't work very well, and it's very galling for hard-working upper middle class people see lower middle class people live as nicely because of a federal subsidy. It wilts initiative, causes resentment, until the more affluent leave and the whole development becomes more and more like the "project" it was designed to replace. Obamaworld is upside down . . .

Anonymous said...

Since when is a lower middle class worker not a hard worker? It is pretty damn snobby for someone to assume that a person living in a city should be relegated to the slums simply because they do not make as much.
Just think of it like this. You are paying 40% of your income towards a place and so is the other person. It's not like they get a free ride.

RicherThanYou said...

The problem with mixed-income developments is that jerks like Chad3337 might live there. God forbid that firefighters, nursing assistants, cashiers or teachers should get equal access to housing as Mr. Upper Middle Class nose-in-the-air.

Chad3337 said...

Many who would be eligible for subsidized housing are extraordinarily hard working. Many are. Others are surviving on government aid. But that's not the point. The point is that handouts deincentivize hard work and savings. Why should anyone try to get ahead if they're going to have the same housing no matter what they do or how much they save. Why should owner A subsidize owner B? Why should a nursing assistant or a cashier live as nicely as a small business owner, a tradesman or a professional? They shouldn't. If I wanted equality of result, I wouldn't live in the U.S.

 

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