Affordable Housing: Can Nimbyism be Transformed into Okimbyism?
Peter W. Salsich
Saint Louis University - School of Law
St. Louis U. Public Law Review, Vol. 19, p. 453, 2000
Saint Louis U. Legal Studies Research Paper
This article discusses the opposition of current residents to the incursions of "different" people or activities into a neighborhood, commonly referred to as the "Not In My Backyard", (NIMBY) syndrome, particularly focusing on affordable housing developments. While the government makes efforts to prevent homelessness by increasing the supply of housing that is affordable to the lowest income levels in our society, the issue of where to locate affordable housing arises. This article discusses three techniques used in various parts of the country for responding to affordable housing concerns. First, the Montgomery County inclusionary zoning ordinance offers a good example of how areas experiencing substantial growth can take a pro-active approach to incorporating affordable housing. Next, California’s mandatory planning legislation responds to the concern by requiring local governments to engage in formal land use planning as a pre-requisite to exercising their zoning power. Finally, Santa Fe created Community Housing Trusts which are nonprofit organizations dedicated to using land for community based purposes such as affordable housing. The article concludes with the recommendation that collaborative efforts be undertaken in all communities to seek common ground among affordable housing advocates, local government officials, businesses, and residents.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 22
Date posted: February 24, 2011