Best Of 2020

Best Effort to Figure Out Greater Cincinnati’s Need for More Affordable Housing: Comprehensive housing strategy

Could Hamilton County’s thousands of vacant lots and homes help solve the area’s affordable housing shortage? That’s one idea groups working on a comprehensive housing strategy for Greater Cincinnati are looking into. Local Initiatives Support Corporation Greater Cincinnati (LISC), the Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF), Legal Aid Society of Greater Cincinnati, the Port of Greater Cincinnati Development Authority and community engagement firm Cohear are compiling data and public input to design a series of recommendations that could guide policymakers as they seek to address the big gap in affordable housing in the county. Currently, Cincinnati needs roughly 27,000 more units of housing affordable to low- and moderate-income residents. The county overall needs about 40,000 units, according to a study LISC completed in 2017. The question is how best to address that problem. That’s what the effort, funded by GCF, PNC Bank, the Mayerson Foundation and JP Morgan Chase, looks to do. One answer might be funding rehabilitation of the county’s thousands of vacant properties to add more housing stock in the region. Other groups are also pushing more funding for affordable housing via increased money for the city’s affordable housing trust fund.