March 12, 2015 |
The New Jersey Supreme Court on Tuesday said Gov. Christie's "moribund" affordable-housing agency had failed to do its job, and effectively transferred the agency's regulatory authority to lower courts. The ruling brought something of a resolution to a decade of litigation over the agency's proposed rules to determine municipalities' housing obligations for low- and moderate-income residents. For years, developers, cities and towns, environmentalists, and the state have wrestled with how to create affordable housing in a state where hundreds of thousands of residents struggle to pay the rent.
March 2, 2015 |
Nora Lichtash has lived in Germantown for more than 40 years. Now she is pitching a development project there for affordable housing that would allow renters to convert their units into equity and home ownership. Lichtash's vehicle is a nonprofit known as the Women's Community Revitalization Project (WCRP). WCRP has operated in Philadelphia since 1987, and Lichtash has been director since 1990. In that time, the nonprofit has developed 250 affordable townhouses and apartments in all five counties of the region, investing about $4 million to date.
February 10, 2015 |
As the New Jersey Supreme Court considers whether to intervene in the Christie administration's regulation of affordable housing, the case has brought into focus a debate over the need for such housing among low- and moderate-income residents. Affordable-housing advocates say the state's estimates - included in proposed regulations that were ultimately rejected in October - lowballed true demand and violated the Supreme Court's landmark 1975 Mount Laurel decision that established municipalities' constitutional obligation to provide their fair share of the region's housing needs.
January 27, 2015 |
The Lansdale project may still be a year from completion, but people in upper Montgomery County and across the state are already bubbling about what may be its most striking and unusual feature: The front door. When North Penn Commons is finished, the door will be the lone entranceway for seemingly disparate groups: members exercising at the local YMCA, seniors living in affordable housing, and visitors to a soup kitchen, Manna on Main Street. The design is intentional, part of a bid to reach across age and economic barriers to integrate struggling older people into the community.
January 8, 2015 |
TRENTON - The New Jersey Supreme Court on Tuesday confronted the possibility of intervening in the state's promulgation of affordable housing rules, two months after the Christie administration failed to meet a court-ordered deadline for adopting new regulations. During 31/2 hours of oral arguments, the justices expressed doubt that the state agency responsible for developing the rules would do so soon, and sought to pursue alternative means to achieve that goal without violating the separation of powers.
January 6, 2015 |
A lucky few chosen from thousands of applicants soon will be able to call the Riverfront Village in Pennsauken their new home. With construction expected to finish ahead of schedule, the first tenants could begin moving into their new digs in February, said Nick Cangelosi, a project manager for Conifer L.L.C., the construction and management company overseeing the project. "It's moving quickly," Cangelosi said in an interview last week. Construction began in March and was expected to take at least 12 months.
December 28, 2014 |
Even as Gov. Christie has slammed the state Supreme Court as too "activist," his administration's inability to establish new affordable-housing rules has raised the prospect that the high court will intervene next year. New Jersey has failed for more than a decade to update its requirements to help municipalities satisfy their constitutional obligation to each provide a fair share of the region's affordable housing to low- and moderate-income residents. After repeated attempts by the Christie administration to fundamentally change that process, the court will hear oral arguments next month in a case brought by affordable-housing advocates, who want the justices to coordinate development of new rules.
December 7, 2014 |
The Philadelphia region's real estate market is booming again, with high-rise cranes towering over Center City and suburban markets doing well, too. But can it also create more affordable homes and rentals? "Strengthening Equitable Development in Philadelphia," a conference from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, will pose relevant questions. Hosted by the Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations (PACDC), the conference is open to the public.
December 2, 2014
CITY COUNCIL'S Public Property Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing today on a resolution to officially establish a Philadelphia Land Bank. The Land Bank law passed late last year. This new resolution takes it a step further and lays out a five-year plan on the goals of the new agency. We urge Chairman Bobby Henon and the committee members to approve the resolution and send it on to the full Council, where we also urge its passage before the end of this year. The legislation is crucial to the future of Philadelphia.
December 1, 2014 |
At the corner of Haddon and Powell Avenues in Collingswood, you can pop into Collings North, the newly opened final phase of a development in the town's center. And soon, you'll also be able to pop in to visit the developer himself. Brad Ingerman, whose company's headquarters are moving from Cherry Hill, will occupy the ground floor, potentially for a long time. "We're not flippers, we build and hold," Ingerman says. "Fifteen years is our minimum holding period. We still own two-thirds of our projects.