Investing in an Affordable Atlanta
$1 billion of local, flexible resources that enable 20,000+ new and preserved homes over the next 8 – 10 years affordable to those earning 0 – 120% of metro Atlanta area’s median income (AMI).
$500M in Public Resources:
- Create policy to prioritize underutilized and surplus publicly owned assets (land and buildings) for community development, yielding 300 – 500 affordable homes annually.
- Issue a new $250 million bond for housing.
- Allocate existing public funding, $10 – $30 million annually.
- Establish new, dedicated, funding source for housing yielding $5 – $15 million annually. Public funds should prioritize area of greatest need, below 50% AMI and supportive housing.
$500M in Private Resources:
- Invest $20 – $50 million annually from new social impact funds, philanthropy & other private capital.
- Secure $50 – $75 million in funding for affordable single-family preservation through New Markets Tax Credits.
- Facilitate 250 – 350 new affordable homes annually through regulatory reform. Changes will ensure innovative housing solutions are zoning and code compliant, create cost savings, and boost production.
Investment without Displacement
One of the most time-sensitive needs is to ensure that Atlantans facing pricing pressures today have responsive resources today. If we do not address impending displacement now, we will permanently lose much of the ‘social mosaic’ we treasure in our city. Immediate actions include:
Comprehensive anti-displacement initiative:
- Short-term and emergency solutions for those facing eviction
- Renters’ rights programs and education
- Property tax relief for affordable housing produced or preserved and existing owners
- A toolbox of funding options for legacy business.
Develop comprehensive wealth building programs (e.g. pathways to ownership and financial literacy) for low and moderate-income residents and businesses in Atlanta’s predominantly Black and Brown neighborhoods experiencing significant investment.
Launch a focused outreach campaign about Tenant Based Voucher Programs aimed at apartment owners and property managers to encourage higher participation and acceptance.
Better & Smarter
To achieve our goals, we must work in more coordinated and collaborative ways – within sectors and across sectors.
A Funders’ Collective. Create a system for private and philanthropic resources to leverage public dollars to create and preserve affordable and mixed-income housing. A coordinated and braided (public, private, and philanthropic) investment system is essential to success.
Cabinet Level Housing Position. Establish a cabinet-level position who works on behalf of the mayor and is responsible for (1) coordination across agencies that touch housing (2) the policy, coordination, and assemblage of public land for affordable housing (3) participation in funders’ collective (4) creation and monitoring of database of existing affordable housing for preservation and (5) cross-sector government affairs strategy to help influence policy.
Non-Profit Capacity. Expand support for non-profit and community-based developers focused on long-term affordability, mixed-income communities, and quality affordable housing for very low-income families through multi-year operating support, dedicated development funding, and relationship building.
Education & Engagement
To be successful and have staying power, we must empower residents and stakeholders with good information and meaningful opportunities to shape our future.
Expand understanding among regional leaders, policy makers, and professionals on how to address housing affordability across income bands (i.e. 0 – 120 % AMI) through educational resources and case studies highlighting successes and results.
Strengthen civic infrastructure by evaluating the Neighborhood Planning Unit (NPU) system and identifying opportunities for deeper engagement while leveraging arts & culture, parks & greenspace, and other ways to meet Atlantans in their neighborhoods.
Create a communications strategy to educate residents on the importance and value of affordable housing and align strategy with tactics set forth in the Community Engagement Playbook.
Design inclusive decision making. Develop processes and programs that support inclusive decision making which reflect the core values outlined in the Atlanta City Design: Equity, Nature, Progress, Access, Ambition.