2 thoughts on “CityViews:
Housing Plan Misses the Big Question of How We Got into this Mess in the First Place

  1. The premise here (albeit grossly oversimplified) seems to be that racist policies created the housing shortage, that buildings with poor minority tenants pay unaffordable water bills, and that such buildings and tenants would benefit from a subsidy paid by other water customers. Just looking at the water issue, it should be understood that water bills are based on consumption. Larger families and denser groupings of people in apartments use more water. Following the recommendation would mean that the elderly, couples and singles, and struggling young professionals in economically integrated buildings would be paying more. I doubt that is what’s intended, but it is what would happen.
    That said, city water bills and city property taxes have been the fastest growing apartment operating costs for decades. They make up about a third of basic operating and maintenance costs, which currently average a total of more than $800 a month (not counting debt service or profit) for a typical apartment. Addressing unaffordable water and tax bills is essential to moderating rents on either new or existing housing.

  2. It is a Tale of two cities
    or a tale of the city’s goal. Climate change, resource

    and neo-classical economics do play a role in this discussion. Most

    of these
    issues started with economic philosophies or currently neo-classical

    In neo-classical economics economies do not really pay attention to resource

    and energy or the process that lead to a product, it mainly only looks at the
    end result of the process and takes an ethnocentric view of wealth by using
    supply and demand, models that do not take energy into consideration, and what
    people decide to do in the market. There is no progressive energy policy or
    energy planning to manage resources and this has an effect on

    change. Developers, contractors, labors and others are stuck in the

    economic philosophies; some don’t understand that everything

    has a
    biosocial component. Since there is a greater divide in wealth there are

    people making the wrong decisions for the larger whole. Some of them don’t

    the real process of economics, which is biophysical process.

    So, the
    root causes of these problems lie in economic philosophies and how people
    define wealth. We all need to face great challenges with natural resource
    depletion, and the reduction of formerly abundant fossil fuels, and climate
    change. We all need to work together and separation does not

    help with
    dealing with issues that affect everyone regardless of class. A new progressive
    energy conscious approach is needed, with resilient architecture that help
    everyone, an energy conscious planning component, a local grid or maximum power
    component, not just a few who are stuck in believing in a neo-classical
    economic ideas that where good when we had abundant resources, but not suitable
    for our current situation.

    The city
    needs to decide what path to take. Does it want to be a leader in thinking

    of ways
    to provide for all by using progressive and innovative ways to deal

    climate change or to be thought as a dwindling city that does not want to

    adapt and
    that uses the same methods that haven’t been successful in the past

    and will
    not be not be successful today?

    We all

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