June 11, 2013 |
Chinatown has little room to grow. The Center City neighborhood is boxed in by the Gallery to the south and the Convention Center to the west. Most construction is happening to the north of Vine Street, and most of that is for high-end housing. But in a narrow elbow of vacant land, near the delivery entrance to the Gallery on Arch Street near Eighth Street, two nonprofit developers are moving ahead with plans for a nine-story, 94-unit apartment house. It's a unique collaboration between the Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corp.
June 9, 2013 |
TRENTON - An appeals panel on Friday blocked the Christie administration's plan to take control of up to $200 million in funds held by municipalities for the construction of housing for the poor and disabled. The three-judge panel of the Appellate Division of Superior Court said towns must be given an opportunity to appeal, case by case, the administration's efforts to take the money, and it criticized the administration for not having given them the chance. The state Council on Affordable Housing has responsibility for overseeing the program, and on May 1 it wrote to municipal governments advising them of its intent to take control of unspent housing funds.
June 7, 2013 |
NEWARK, N.J. - With the New Jersey budget deadline of July 1 looming, a state appellate panel heard arguments Wednesday in a long-running legal battle between housing advocates and the Christie administration over the administration's plan to seize up to $200 million held by municipal governments for building subsidized housing for the poor and disabled. A 2008 law signed by Gov. Jon S. Corzine gives the administration the right to seize funds that were collected from developers for building low-cost housing but had not been committed.
June 5, 2013
THE GREAT RECESSION has done many bad things to many people. But perhaps one aftermath that has been beneficial is the increase in multigenerational households. Their numbers expanded from 2007 to 2009 - the recession years - to a record 51.4 million people, according to the Pew Research Center. "Starting right after World War II, the extended-family household fell out of favor with the American public," according to a Pew report. "Since bottoming out around 1980, however, the multigenerational family household has mounted a comeback.
May 28, 2013 |
A years-long effort to preserve the rolling hills, meadows, and grassland of Maple Ridge - once destined for a housing development - is nearing fruition. Maple Ridge, the Gloucester County open space that spans Deptford and Mantua Townships and abuts Wenonah, closed as a golf course in 2006. Residents and environmental groups have been pushing to acquire the land since. A development firm in Washington snatched up the 112-acre property but has been open to selling due to the housing slump.
May 10, 2013 |
TRENTON - Assembly Democrats and a cabinet official bickered Thursday over whether the Republican governor's policies have produced real property tax relief and whether the administration has given sufficient guidance to towns on spending for affordable housing projects. Richard Constable, commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs, told the Assembly Budget Committee that Gov. Christie's reforms, including changes to pensions and benefits and an annual 2 percent cap, are helping to slow property-tax increases.
May 2, 2013 |
Defying attempts to kill it off, the New Jersey Council on Affordable Housing met for the first time in more than two years Wednesday and began the process of taking at least $142 million in funds dedicated to low- and moderate-income housing to help balance the state budget. COAH has few friends in Trenton, and was reorganized out of existence in 2011 by Gov. Christie. But last August, a court breathed new life into it. On Wednesday, the council voted, 4-1, to ask municipalities to send proof of their plans to spend any money that was dormant in their affordable housing trust funds for four years as of July 17, 2012, and transfer uncommitted amounts to the council by May 22. The move drew protests from housing advocates.
April 20, 2013 |
Mount Laurel Township, long synonymous with landmark court cases mandating affordable housing, can also lay claim as a town that pushed back against billboards. On Monday, the national beautification group Scenic America will honor the town's leaders and residents for successfully defending the right of municipalities to restrict billboards within their borders. The national organization's president, Mary Tracy, is to present its Stafford Award to the township at Monday's council meeting.
April 16, 2013 |
It's easy to imagine the sprawling 19th-century brick mill on South Kensington's Howard Street as just another high-end apartment complex for twentysomething professionals, the newest outpost on Philadelphia's ever-advancing frontier of gentrification. Situated a few blocks north of Fishtown's hipster bars and BYOB food shrines, Oxford Mills preserves the kind of authentic architectural details that make young, and not-so-young, renters swoon: high ceilings, huge windows, thick wooden beams.
March 28, 2013 |
A mixed-use affordable-housing development is moving forward in Norristown despite opposition from some residents. The plan calls for 96 one- and two-bedroom apartments, as well as 5,000 square feet of retail space, at DeKalb and Airy Streets. Sixty units would be reserved for low- and moderate-income residents. The site is now a parking lot owned by Montgomery County. The county deemed it underused, and in February agreed to transfer ownership through a profit-sharing redevelopment deal.