City Design Center Overview
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Community Design Excellence


Affordable Housing



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Affordable Housing

“With a strong economy, a cruel irony: we actually have the greatest need for affordable housing in the nation’s history.”
Andrew Cuomo, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
In the United States today, as many as 50 million households carry rent payments or mortgages and other housing related expenses that exceed their ability to pay. Many are under-housed or have no housing at all. Very low-income working-class Americans are finding it difficult to find and keep their homes. Low cost housing options, such as public housing and single room occupancy hotels, are being demolished more rapidly than new units are produced. Over the past several decades, affordable housing needs continue to grow and exceed the production of new and renovated units.

As Roberta Feldman explains, “It is not surprising that many of the Center’s community-based partners have requested assistance in developing innovative and effective low-cost housing - it is a vital need.” The Center has been working with non-profit housing providers and low-income community residents to support households that are struggling to keep and improve their homes as well as those organizations seeking to develop exemplary affordable housing design and planning strategies.


Out of the Box: Design Innovations in Manufactured Housing

Chicago Historic Greystone Initiative

Home Ownership Rehabilitation Program

Sustainable Connections Project

Community Re-Design of Barbara Jean Wright Courts

Neighborhood Impact Studies

From Public Housing to Home Ownership

Linking Affordable Housing to Community Development

Chicago DOH Targeted Blocks Facade Program

Supportive Housing Program

Making Much of Small Spaces: Evaluation of Lakefront SRO Housing

Marketing Information: Promotion Materials for the Affordable Housing Fund

Promoting Affordability: Feasibility Study of Mixed Income Housing for the South Loop

Housing By and For Seniors: Collaborative Design with the Shriman Affordable Housing Campaign

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