class, Housing, Social Problems

Opinion Only Washington Can Solve the Nation’s Housing Crisis. The federal government once promised to provide homes for every American. What happened? By Lizabeth Cohen Dr. Cohen is the author of the forthcoming “Saving America’s Cities: Ed Logue and the Struggle to Renew Urban America in the Suburban Age.” July 10, 2019

In recent months America’s affordable housing crisis, a long-simmering issue for people of low and moderate incomes, has burst onto the front page. Rents are rising much faster than income, while the median home price in some 200 cities is $1 million. After a decade of decline, the number of homeless Americans is ticking back up. The private market is clearly failing. Although many city and state governments are motivated to take action, they have limited tools at their disposal, and few of them equal to the task. The Department of Housing and Urban Development, at least under its current leadership, is hardly stepping up.

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Housing, Social Problems, Urban

Opinion:
Americans Need More Neighbors
A big idea in Minneapolis points the way for other cities desperately in need of housing.

By The Editorial Board

The editorial board represents the opinions of the board, its editor and the publisher. It is separate from the newsroom and the Op-Ed section.

June 15, 2019

Housing is one area of American life where government really is the problem. The United States is suffering from an acute shortage of affordable places to live, particularly in the urban areas where economic opportunity increasingly is concentrated. And perhaps the most important reason is that local governments are preventing construction.

Don’t be misled by the construction cranes that punctuate city skylines. The number of housing units completed in the United States last year, adjusted for the size of the population, was lower than in any year between 1968 and 2008. And the problem is most acute in major urban areas along the east and west coasts. Housing prices, and homelessness, are rising across the country because there is not enough housing.

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