Public Benefit from Publicly Owned Parcels: Effective Practices in Affordable Housing Development
Communities across the country are facing a range of challenges to ensuring access to affordable homes, particularly for low- and moderate-income households. One innovative approach to confronting these challenges is the use of publicly owned parcels for affordable housing and other community benefits. In strong markets, creative use of these sites can expand opportunities for affordability, especially when mission-driven developers struggle to acquire sites against better-funded market-rate developers. In markets or neighborhoods with less competition for land, publicly owned parcels offer an important opportunity to catalyze development and seed revitalization. However, these parcels can present significant challenges in planning, solicitation and development.
This research identifies leading practices and recommendations for overcoming challenges to creating affordable housing and other community benefits through the publicly owned parcel development process. This research also provides a range of approaches and success stories for equitable publicly owned parcel development.