Low-income Housing

In many cities, the crumbling housing projects that once housed the nation's poorest families are being replaced by mixed- income housing developments.

The US Department of Housing and Urban Development has made mixed-income housing the preferred model for providing affordable housing. The concept is to deconcentrate individuals who earn lower incomes and to assist those families in maintaining a residence in a community that serves various income levels. A recent study examines the effects of low-income children living alongside more affluent neighbors.

Sitting on the steps with a child soon after I arrived in Durham to work as a community organizer for Operation Breakthrough.

Dr. Howard Fuller has dedicated much of his life’s work to eradicating poverty. His work began in 1965, when he went to Durham to work as a community organizer and helped young African-American students and youth find a voice for themselves in organizations aimed toward ending poverty. 

A picture of a window with a for rent sign.
capl_@_washjeff.edu / Creative Commons

North Carolina has better houses and apartments for sale or rent than in recent years. But Bob Kucab says with that rise in quality, affordability has become a problem. He directs the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency.

“And the biggest culprit is quite simply that housing costs have risen faster than incomes for most families over the past 10 years,” Kucab says.

Now, developers, real estate agents, lenders and agencies are gathering to share potential solutions.

A picture of a window with a for rent sign.
capl_@_washjeff.edu / Creative Commons

Several major property management companies in Carrboro and Chapel Hill are no longer accepting federal housing assistance vouchers.  Housing assistance advocates say options for low-income families in the area are dwindling.

James Davis of the Orange County Housing Authority said at a press conference in Carrboro yesterday that there's a misconception that Section 8 recipients don't work, or that participating in the Section 8 program is difficult.

City of Raleigh

Federal budget cuts are influencing changes to subsidized housing in Raleigh.

This week, the City Council approved a Raleigh Housing Authority plan that would change the units in the Capitol Park projects away from the public housing model. Housing Authority Director Steve Beam says he's now waiting for the US Department of Housing and Urban Development to weigh in:

Public Housing in Chapel Hill.
Town of Chapel Hill

Section 8 is a federal subsidy program that bridges the gap between people with low-income and market rentals. But this summer, Chapel Hill, Carrboro and Raleigh, all face cuts to their Section 8 Voucher Program.

Raleigh's old Stone's Warehouse building could be the future home to talented Triangle-area artists who often struggle to make ends meet. The city council has approved a 99-year lease with the state Historical Preservation Foundation for project. Landmark Asset Services is a Winston-Salem firm that specializes in such rehabs. The group has teamed up with developer Vann Joines - who says the 7-and-a-half million dollar Raleigh Arts Village will encourage people - from woodworkers to storytellers -to be an economic driver for the community.

Brookridge ribbon cutting
DHIC, Inc.

  Low-income people in Wake County got access some more housing options this week when officials dedicated a supportive housing development. Brookridge is a neighborhood of 40 studio apartments in south Raleigh.

Residents make 50 percent or less of the area's median income. Program manager Annemarie Maiorano says the development supports a population that is susceptible to becoming homeless or falling back into homelessness.