12 thoughts on “CityViews: Affordable-Housing Advocates Must Listen to Opponents of Community Preference

  1. The Community Preference is designed to enable people to remain in their own neighborhoods if they so desire. The preference also builds support for these projects among local residents. Nothing wrong with either of those goals.

  2. In gentrifying areas, long time residents are fighting to retain Community Preference because they hope it will reduce displacement. Fair housing advocates counter that community preference is used by white neighborhoods and towns to stay white. Underneath it all is structural white supremacy that forces us to fight over insufficient race-neutral policies when the real goal is to dismantle structural white supremacy. People on both sides getting together to discuss is clearly a first step in figuring out how we can do that. #undesigntheredline

  3. “Of course, this is exacerbated by recent city policy preserving the low rise character of many predominantly White New York City neighborhoods, even down-zoning them.”

    …recent? Bloomberg’s downzonings were bad, but they were following a century of precedent – the 1916 and 1961 zoning codes did the exact same thing, in a much bigger way.

    • Bloomberg downzoned large sections of the east shore of Staten Island in 2005/06. This followed years of bottom-up requests from local elected officials and community groups. In many neighborhoods large 1 family homes were torn down only to be replaced with attached 1 & 2 family townhomes which stressed Staten Island’s limited road, water & sewer and school infrastructure. Most sections were downzoned from R3-1 to R3X or from R3-2 to R3-1. The downzonings helped undo the mistakes of the 1961 zoning which permitted too many attached and semi-attached homes on an island that could not support them. In fact the 1961 zoning included large sections of R3-2 zoned blocks on the east shore. By 1962 that zoning was changed to R3-1.

  4. no that is racial talk all people should be able to apply and get a apartment in any building affordable housing equaly not just because you lived in a neighborhood you said white neighborhoods use zoning to stay white other neighborhoods for instance farrockaway does the opposite this is all wrong stop putting everything into a racial zone all people should be mixed up together not everybody lived their whole life in neighborhood we the coalition of the rockaways want a mixture of the melting pot nyc is not segregated policies thank you

  5. your wrong not only white neighborhoods do it all neighborhoods do it farrockaway Bushwick Brownsville eny Bronx all do it they should get rid of community preference in affordable housing because all people in nyc should equaly be able to get affordable housing we need a mix in our neighborhood coalition of the rockaways bruce Jacobs not just who politicians want to keep in their neighborhoods

  6. Community preference is very valuable in communities that were considered disadvantaged. In the Late 70’s when the South Bronx was burning and the landlords paid people to burn down the buildings for tax right offs, no one was concerned or even wanted any parts of these communities that were DEPRESSED, DISINVESTED, and DESTROYED, not even Mayor Koch. Now all of a sudden the community preferences rule is an issue, bullshit. The same landlords that paid to have the buildings burn downed are the same developers that want to claim there property back as of right. HPD should be held accountable for the assurance that the community preference meets the existing community, that’s FAIR, so that the current residents can have an option to stay in the community that they live in for decades now that developers want to invest, improve and displace current residents. If you want fairness it should involve all parties and stakeholders. Each Community Board should have a housing community member sit at the table when these applications are being selected so that the fifty percent preference is adhered to and not questioned. HPD WILL SAY OH WE CANT DO THAT , THAT WOULD VIOLATE PEOPLES PRIVACY. We are not interested in people privacy, just the ZIP CODES. That’s my opinion on FAIRNESS.

  7. Community Preference policy could be a good thing and I support it so local residents benefit and can be protected from displacement. However, the flip side is it definitely can lead to further economic and racial segregation of NYC. There is no easy fix, however the best way to approach this is to ensure all affordable housing developments around the city are true mix income developments providing 50% of the units for low income, very low income and extremely low income and 50% of the units for moderate and middle income families to ensure community income is balanced which will lead to the long term stability of the neighborhood. there needs to be a balance between gentrification, community improvement and stopping concentrated poverty across the city.

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