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May 16, 2018
by Adam Roberts
Designing New York: Quality Affordable Housing, a collaboration between AIANY’s Housing Committee, the NYC Public Design Commission (PDC), and the Fine Arts Federation of New York.
Designing New York: Quality Affordable Housing, a collaboration between AIANY’s Housing Committee, the NYC Public Design Commission (PDC), and the Fine Arts Federation of New York.

The lack of affordable housing in New York City has reached a crisis point. Nevertheless, there has been a building boom; one that is skewed to luxury residential and even come to the point of driving down prices and forcing increased concessions from landlords. For the average New Yorker who is not looking to the luxury market, the affordability crisis has deepened, with little new stock coming on line.

In late 2017, Mayor de Blasio increased the goals for his affordable housing construction and preservation plan, Housing New York 2.0, from 200,000 homes to 300,000 by 2026. The plan includes calls for infill at Mitchell-Lama and Section 8 housing, incentivization for non-profit development and housing preservation, and a renewed focus on senior housing.

Despite the public discourse about the need for more affordable housing, too little has been said about how that housing will be designed. To stress the importance of design excellence in this dialogue, a new report, Designing New York: Quality Affordable Housing, has been released. The report is a collaboration between AIANY’s Housing Committee, the NYC Public Design Commission (PDC), and the Fine Arts Federation of New York. Using a series of guiding principles, it contains case studies of New York City buildings completed over the last 20 years. PDC intends to use these principles during its reviews of affordable housing throughout the city.

AIANY will continue to advocate for greater awareness of design excellence in the city’s bureaucracy, which is essential to creating more just and equitable built environment.

Pulse Points:

  • On Tuesday, June 12 from 9 am – 12 pm, the NYC Department of Design and Construction (DDC) is hosting its 2018 Consultants Open House. At the event, DDC will share its Project Pipeline as well as highlight new contract processes and procedures. For more information and to RSVP, click here.
  • On Thursday, June 21 from 6:30 8:30 pm, the Museum of the City of New York is hosting the event “Reduce, Reuse, Rethink: The Future of Waste in NYC,” discussing the feasibility of eliminating waste sent to landfills. For more information and to RSVP, click here.
  • Mark your calendar for the first primaries of the 2018 election cycle. Congressional primaries for Democrats and Republicans are being held on Tuesday, June 26. Competitive primaries are occurring throughout the City, so please be sure to vote if you are registered with a party. Click here to check your registration status.

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