Skip to main content

How California’s housing shortage chases away the middle class

Ethan Elkind, associate director, Climate Change and Business Program | March 17, 2016

Next 10, a nonpartisan research entity (with whom I’ve worked on studies in the past), released a trio of reports that shows how California’s housing shortage and resulting high prices have chased middle class and low-wage residents out of the state:   California experienced a negative net domestic migration of 625,000 from 2007 to 2014. … Continue reading »

How to stop displacement

Mitchell Crispell, graduate student, city and regional planning | February 17, 2016

At the Urban Displacement Project, we get calls every week from cities struggling with gentrification and displacement in their communities. What can we do, they ask us, to maintain our diverse community? The strategies are out there—rent control, impact fees, inclusionary housing, and the list goes on. But the policymakers and advocates calling us don’t have … Continue reading »

A multi-dimensional approach to affordable housing policy: Learning from climate change policy

Karen Chapple, Professor, City and Regional Planning | February 11, 2016

A consensus is emerging that we have to do everything in our power to slow the course of global warming. The list of tools includes long-term measures such as greater energy efficiencies in buildings, industry, appliances; carbon cap-and-trade systems and taxes; new standards for fuel economy and the reduction of CO2 emissions from new passenger … Continue reading »

Mission accomplished? Revisiting the solutions

Karen Chapple, Professor, City and Regional Planning | November 10, 2015

By Karen Chapple and Mitchell Crispell Last week, San Francisco voters rejected a ballot initiative that would have halted market-rate development in the Mission District. The proposed moratorium highlighted schisms in the community around the best way to slow the displacement that has made the Mission the gentrification poster child of the Bay Area. One side … Continue reading »

Redwood City: An improbable villain of the Bay Area displacement crisis

Karen Chapple, Professor, City and Regional Planning | September 14, 2015

“Evicted Redwood City tenants rally to stay in complex as calls grow for renter protections” announces the headline, with a photo of 14-year-old Gabriel Banuelos holding the eviction notice for the 18-unit apartment complex. But why would this happen in “Deadwood” City (the long-standing local nickname for the moribund downtown area)? As findings from our Urban … Continue reading »

Displacement: The misunderstood crisis

Karen Chapple, Professor, City and Regional Planning | August 28, 2015

When we think of gentrification and displacement, we typically envision a hipster – young, professional, and probably white – in the Mission District or Brooklyn at the peak of the real estate boom. But this archetype, while not inaccurate, is just the tip of the iceberg. Displacement, which is distinct from gentrification, occurs in many … Continue reading »

The future of displacement

Karen Chapple, Professor, City and Regional Planning | August 24, 2015

The year is 2030. Protesters gather around yet another apartment building where long-term residents are being evicted to accommodate newcomers. We must be in San Francisco. No, we’re in Oakland. Guess again. It’s Hayward. Or, Concord. Or perhaps, Santa Rosa. In 2030, these and many other Bay Area communities may realize that their neighborhood has … Continue reading »

On housing, good news for families and communities

Carol Galante, faculty director, Berkeley Program in Housing and Urban Policy | January 8, 2015

President Obama’s announcement that the Federal Housing Administration will lower the cost of its home loans by one-half of a percentage point (.50 basis points) should be very welcome news. Home loans will now be within reach for many more hard working and responsible families who have been left on the sidelines of the economic … Continue reading »

The blocked market for density and affordable housing

Karen Chapple, Professor, City and Regional Planning | October 17, 2014

Around the globe, many cities are experiencing a housing affordability crisis. There are few places this crisis is more pronounced than San Francisco and Los Angeles. California’s strict land use regulations hinder us from producing enough housing, particularly infill development, or new buildings on vacant or underutilized land in the urban core. Yet, with 200,000 units in the … Continue reading »

The public-housing experiment

Claude Fischer, professor of sociology | January 15, 2014

Public housing in the United States has never sheltered a significant proportion of Americans, perhaps three percent at most — unlike in many western European countries, where 10 to 40 percent of households, at various income levels, live in state-constructed buildings. But public housing has been a significant part of the debate over American government safety-net programs, a significant … Continue reading »

Transportation policy is housing policy

Stephen Menendian, assistant director, Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society | September 6, 2013

Many years ago Haas Institute Executive Director john powell warned education advocates that “housing is education policy” — a refrain now regarded as common wisdom. The insight behind this assertion is a recognition that patterns of racial and economic isolation that manifest in schools and other educational environments are chiefly a function of residential housing … Continue reading »

$300 slum house? Worthy but worthless

Jason Corburn, associate professor, city and regional planning | June 3, 2011

The Economist published an article last month on the competition to build a $300 house intended to improve the lives of slum dwellers.  The article came from a blog post in the Harvard Business Review by Vijay Govindarajan, of Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business, and Christian Sarkar, a marketing consultant, who set out to explore the … Continue reading »