What is publicly-owned land, and how can it be made available for homes that are more affordable at various income levels?
Publicly-owned land and buildings can be critical resources in diversifying the housing stock and providing homes affordable to various income levels that do not currently exist. Opportunities to use publicly-owned land and buildings to diversify the housing stock include making vacant land available for housing development, building at higher density on lower-density sites, and adding residential space on top of existing structures such as parking garages and fire stations. By finding affordable housing opportunities on publicly-owned land, localities can lead by example and demonstrate their commitment to increasing the supply of housing choices at a lower cost than might otherwise be incurred.
What about tax-delinquent properties?
What problems are solved by making publicly-owned land available for affordable homes?
Publicly-owned land also offers a valuable opportunity for local governments to take an active role in shaping their communities through direct control of land-use decisions. For example, a community could use publicly-owned land to demonstrate the feasibility of higher-density, mixed-income, or mixed-use developments. This is a particularly attractive way to demonstrate developments that contain a strong affordability component. Additionally, when the city conveys land using a Request for Proposals (RFP) process, it can both select a developer and play a major role in determining exactly what is built, especially in terms of design, households served, and affordability. One good example is Woodbury's City Walk development in which the city acquired a 2.2 acre parcel from the developer of a large site and selected a developer for an affordable component of the project using an RFP process.
Where are these policies most applicable?
Related Case Studies
Twin Cities Community Land Bank
Within the Minneapolis Twin Cities seven county region, new resources are available to help public entities purchase and hold available land...