Two Different Housing Crises

By Luc Schuster, CommonWealth Magazine, 11/16/19

There are actually two parts to the housing crisis now facing the region.

First, our society acknowledges the need to respect human rights and to provide a safety net for many for health care, food, etc. But there are no safety nets for housing. What Massachusetts has is a cobbled together patchwork of low-income housing programs and subsidies. But it leaves far too many behind.

Second, middle income families headed by school teachers, salespeople, nurses, non-profit workers, and retirees living on fixed incomes can not afford the average price of housing in the Greater Boston region. There are solutions, like allowing more density around public transit corridors and like permitting zoning changes to pass with a simple majority. Zoning changes are also necessary to move us toward a more sustainable environment.