affordable housing

Julio Cortez / AP

The median home price in Georgia is on track to nearly double from 2012 prices in the coming years, and wages haven’t kept up. Georgia cities can be especially expensive. Atlanta rents have spiked in the past decade at the same time the number of units classified as affordable have been dropping.

GPB’s Ross Terrell recently discussed housing costs with U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson when Carson was in Atlanta for a conference on emerging strategies to address affordable housing.

A stretch of I-85 in southwest Georgia is a proving ground for technologies that could make such roadways ecologically sustainable.  Allie Kelly, executive director of The Ray, visits On Second Thought to talk about the road renovations.

The lack of affordable housing is a hot topic in Georgia cities.  The median home price in Georgia is on track to nearly double from 2012 in the coming years.  GPB’s Ross Terrell asked Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson about gentrification and regulation and how it affects many facets of Georgians including veterans and minorities.


Carlos Osorio / Associated Press

Federal officials held a two-day conference in Atlanta on Emerging Strategies to Affordable Housing, where U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson spoke about his plan to solve the issue.

Carson sat down with GPB’s Ross Terrell beforehand to discuss what he sees as the problems that are creating an affordable housing shortage and why he believes President Trump’s tweets to four congresswomen weren’t racist.

SanjibLemar / Wikimedia Commons

In many American neighborhoods, it's illegal to build anything other than a single-family home on most lots zoned for residential properties. Take Sandy Springs for example: 85% of the Atlanta suburb's residential land allows for only detached, single-family homes. Some people want to change that, and regional leaders are passing laws to increase density. Others want things to stay exactly as they are: One family. One house. One yard.


Sign for the plan in front of construction
City of Atlanta Twitter

Atlanta is launching a new comprehensive plan to address affordable housing in the city, but one expert thinks it doesn't go far enough.


When it comes to the 2020 elections, big name Democrats are making a major play for Georgia. Biden, Booker, Beto and Buttigieg – and those are just the candidates who are in the state this week. We hear how the visiting hopefuls pitched themselves to Georgia voters.


Georgia Department of Community Affairs

Millions of Americans are teetering on the brink of poverty, according to a new report from Prosperity Now that says 40 percent of all U.S. households – and 57 percent of households of color – could be knocked over the edge by one unexpected medical expense, lost paycheck or job loss.

That financial instability is mirrored in housing insecurity, and, while homelessness in Atlanta is on the decline, Fulton County remains by far the highest among the national benchmark counties, according to the Department for Housing and Urban Development. 


Today "On Second Thought" explored Georgia's economic and political landscape. We checked in with "Political Rewind" host Bill Nigut to discuss Brian Kemp's plans as the new governor of Georgia.

We also heard from professors, journalists and policy makers about Georgia's Amazon HQ2 bid and why Atlanta ranks worst in the nation for income inequality.

sweet auburn atlanta housing house apartment street
Ken Lund / Flickr

Bloomberg recently analyzed cities with more than 250,000 people across the country and determined Atlanta is the worst city for income inequality in the United States. Its report states the median income in the city is $57,000.

That's compared to what the top 5 percent of residents make, which exceeds $637,000. This gap in income is determined by factors like affordable housing, wealth accumulation and Georgia's low minimum wage.


Bill Bolling / Atlanta Community Food Bank

Bill Bolling knew from his first experience at the community kitchen at St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Atlanta that he was destined for a life of service.

"I thought wow, this is it. After three college degrees and being a veteran — I even called my mother up and said, 'Mom! This is what God wants me to do,'" Bolling said. "Make soup!"

We spoke with Bill Bolling about founding the Atlanta Community Food Bank in 1979. The food bank has served over 750,000 people each year in Georgia. Bolling retired in 2015, but still actively works with food organizations like the Foodwell Alliance. He is also involved in collaborative efforts to combat poverty and housing inequality in the state.


Leighton Rowell / GPB

Fifty years after the Fair Housing Act, we took a look at the state of fair housing and affordable housing in Georgia today.


Grant Blankenship / GPB

During the 1930s, Macon, Georgia was the nation's most redlined city. That term was not used until much later, but the practice -- denying mortgage loans or municipal services that effectively drew a line around areas based on race or income -- was common. Redlining is now illegal, but as GPB's Grant Blankenship reported in 2016, finding affordable housing in Macon -- and many of Georgia's growing cities -- is tough.


Ross Terrell / GPB News

The Fair Housing Act is 50 years old this year. Former President Lyndon Johnson implemented this landmark piece of civil rights legislation days after Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination. King often said housing was a key victory in the struggle for African-American equity in the United States.

We spoke with Dan Immergluck, a professor in the Urban Studies Institute at Georgia State University. He discussed how legislation from 50 years ago shaped how housing in Georgia functions today.


Ross Terrell / GPB News

The city of Atlanta unveiled a new affordable housing complex for seniors on Monday.


Grant Blankenship / GPB

Chalk it up to the law of unintended consequences.

The Federal tax reform that passed this year was intended to provide tax relief. The perhaps unintended effect was a potentially massive disruption in one of the private solutions to public sector problems often beloved by Republicans and Democrats alike.

 


Stephen Fowler | GPB News

The Atlanta BeltLine is the city’s ambitious urban redevelopment project that, when finished, will encompass more than 22 miles of trails in a ring around Atlanta.

On parts of the BeltLine that are already opened, developers have brought more than four billion dollars of private investment in shopping, dining, office and living spaces.  

Dwayne Vaughn is the BeltLine’s new Vice President of Housing Policy and Development. It’s his job to make sure it stays accessible to Atlantans of all socioeconomic backgrounds.

Courtesy of "Blindspotting"

From Broadway to the big screen, actors Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal are in Georgia for the Atlanta Film Festival. They both co-wrote and star in “Blindspotting,” a film that examines social issues like gentrification and police brutality through the eyes of of two men living in Oakland, California. 

Leighton Rowell / GPB

This week we talked about student debt, modern mass protest movements and Martin Luther King Jr.'s lasting legacy. We sat down with our Breakroom guests to process it all. 

We were joined in the studio by Georgia State University professors Tanya Washington and Héctor Fernández, Soumaya Khalifa, executive director of the Islamic Speakers Bureau of Atlanta, and Leap Year founder and executive director Amber Scott. 

David Goldman / AP Photo

Last month, Atlanta became the first Georgia city to adopt inclusionary zoning ordinances. This requires developers to reserve housing for low income Atlantans around the Beltline and Mercedes Benz stadium. Is this a step in right direction for creating more affordable housing?

(AP Photo/John Bazemore)

On this edition of Political Rewind, 6th District Congresswoman Karen Handel is tapped to help other GOP candidates for congress on how to run for office in the anti-Trump atmosphere, but the AJC’s Jim Galloway says Governor Nathan Deal may be the best model for Republicans on how to win. 

Atlanta Land Deal Angers People Who Want Affordable Housing

Oct 13, 2017
Anish Patel / Flickr/CC

A controversial deal to require Atlanta's low-income housing authority to sell prime parcels of vacant land to a developer would hand them over at a $120 million discount, according to estimates obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

If the sale goes through, it could amount to a king-sized subsidy towards the construction of high-end, market-rate homes, and harm the city's efforts to create more affordable housing, public housing officials and affordable housing advocates said.

Valerie / Flickr/CC

As Georgia State University and its development partners move forward on redeveloping downtown Atlanta’s Turner Field, neighbors of the former Atlanta Braves stadium are locked in a bitter struggle over how to secure things like affordable housing, green space, jobs and connectivity.

Grant Blankenship / GPB

 

The asbestos was already being removed from Tindall Heights by the time the politicians were ready to celebrate its demolition.

Thelma Dillard was one of the local politicians there to say goodbye before the pre-demolition press conference. She serves on the local school board and grew up in the over 70-year-old public housing project.

 

“My mother moved here when I was a baby. And I lived here until I went off to college,” Dillard said.

 

A Macon Program To Revitalize a Neighborhood Expands

Apr 26, 2016

A program in Macon-Bibb County that pays the down payment for Macon homes is going to expand. The target is the Bealls Hill neighborhood, a place that used to be downtrodden but is now revitalized. Twenty-thousand dollar down payments are provided as Mercer matches Knight Foundation money. So far since 2007, about a third of the project has been bought with this assistance. Now, Historic Macon wants to expand to other businesses who might match that Knight money. GPB's Michael Caputo talked with Ethiel Garlington of Historic Macon about the effort.