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Pilot Program To Boost Affordable Housing In Lawrenceville Through Inclusionary Zoning

“Like most American cities, Pittsburgh needs thousands more units of affordable housing, but federal and state money to build those homes continues to shrink.

“The city of Pittsburgh wants to test out one way to fill that gap, by requiring some affordable housing to be included in residential projects. It’s called inclusionary zoning, and the idea is to use private development to create a public good.

“The Department of City Planning is working with community group Lawrenceville United to develop an inclusionary zoning pilot project for the neighborhood. Residents overwhelmingly support the idea, said the community group’s executive director Dave Breingan.

“‘The main critique that we’ve heard is that it doesn’t go far enough, or that we wish we had had this sooner,’ he said. ‘We’ve had so many projects that would have qualified under this policy come on line already, and there has been so much displacement.’

“‘Inclusionary zoning and mandatory policies are much more pervasive now across the country. But this is still new for Pittsburgh,’ Breingan said, noting that mandatory inclusionary zoning policies are frequently a target for legal challenges. ‘It’s important that we get it right, not just for Lawrenceville, but for the entire city of Pittsburgh.’”

FULL STORY published Feb. 12, 2019 via WESA