Friday, May 2, 2014

Seeking solutions to the housing crisis

Streetscape from Hong Kong shows dense residential does not have to be boring.
This is an intro to a link to a New York Times piece on the housing crisis facing cities around the globe. I really liked some of the stuff the writer said.

As someone who attended many of the ReThink London meetings, I believe cities may well lack  the fortitude to deal head-on with the numerous problems encountered trying to supply decent, while also affordable, housing.

Housing policy can be very tricky to get right. “Success is going to be in the eye of the beholder,” says Eric Belsky, the managing director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard. “If success means building more homes at greater densities, you’ll end up with some neighbors not happy . .  .

Personally, I find the London, Ontario, solution of embracing sprawl to be totally unacceptable. That said, I feel quite alone in my opposition. Oh, lots of folk talk the end-the-sprawl talk but they fail to walk the end-the-sprawl walk.

Here is the link to Rent Too High? Move to Singapore. Read it, let it make you think and don't get hung up on statements like the following: "It seems the only solution would be to level all of, say, North Brooklyn and put up monolithic prefab tower blocks. But New Yorkers don’t want to live in Singapore." (And there is no demand to emulate Singapore housing in either London, Ontario, or New York, New York.)

When it comes to housing, Singapore and Hong Kong are guideposts and not final destinations.

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