“A new study of San Antonio suggests that, despite its fearsome reputation, most low-income housing isn’t dangerous at all, either to residents or neighbors who live nearby. The great majority of crime in the city’s projects is concentrated in just a few high-risk developments.
“‘We found that housing developments with more security and design features that are aimed at reducing criminal opportunities had lower violent, drug, and property crime,’ said researcher Marie Skubak Tillyer. ‘So it suggests that investing in those sorts of things can actually be really beneficial for residents.’
“A safer public housing project is one that allows residents to advocate for themselves. An organized neighborhood association or tenants union can demand improvements to its environment, and a housing authority can carry them out, without having authority over the people who are committing crime.
“Well-lit common areas, visible from the buildings, should allow residents to congregate, socialize, and get to know each other; small groups of responsible residents can … create natural social control.”
FULL STORY published November 30, 2018 via CityLab