A livable community has affordable and appropriate housing, supportive features and services, and adequate mobility options for people, regardless of age or ability. As communities address the general shortage of affordable housing, preserving affordable housing in transit-oriented developments (TODs) is one of the challenges that communities can address to increase their livability.
TODs are compact, walkable, mixed-use communities that are developed around high-quality public transportation. Residents often prize these places for the advantages created by the proximity to transportation and other amenities. One consequence of this desirability is that it can increase land and property values, exacerbating housing affordability challenges.
As policymakers try to extend the benefits of TODs to affordable housing locations, they must ensure that those benefits are available to people of low and moderate incomes and to those with different mobility…
Building 100 affordable homes in the middle of an area of distress and disinvestment may help only the 100 families who receive the homes. But those same 100, built in another location and bundled with other related activities, may help not only those 100 households, but the hundreds of residents around them. The Market Value Analysis (MVA) is an effective instrument to help create that kind of impact. The MVA identifies where and how to invest limited resources that can transform urban real estate markets into revitalized neighborhoods.
This work is intended as a way of recognizing the path-breaking efforts of those in St. Louis, Cleveland, Louisville, Atlanta, Flint, and numerous smaller cities that have done so much in overcoming the barriers to building new communities in the wake of disinvestment. It is also designed to make it possible for other communities across the country to gain inspiration from the dreams and hopes of these urban pioneers, and to build upon their legal, structural, and social reforms.
The study that resulted in this book was initiated in September 2001 to examine how decisions about public transportation, land development and redevelopment, and historic preservation have complemented one another in dozens of communities nationwide. The goal of the study was to demonstrate how transit and historic preservation act as compatible forces to revitalize communities. We set out to illuminate the many ways in which communities of all sizes have restored their urban or suburban cores and made full use of those centers’ capacities to help metropolitan areas grow sustainably. We wanted to find out how historic preservation values are informing community planning for public transit, and how these values are being used in development decisions intended to promote transit use.