During Tuesday’s lunch hour, September 20th, protesters blocked Downtown traffic as they called for more affordable housing in Pittsburgh (Click to read the TribLive article about Tuesday’s Protests). Pittsburgh City Council should vote by year’s end on whether to create an affordable housing trust fund, council President Bruce Kraus pledged Wednesday night. Last Wednesday evening, September 21st, the Pittsburgh City Council held a hearing on an affordable housing fund proposal.
His commitment followed a nearly three-hour council hearing Downtown attended by more than 100 people, including about 50 who spoke. In often-personal terms, nearly every speaker endorsed legislation that would create a housing “opportunity fund” amid a scarcity of affordable units.
Speakers from a cross section of community groups and neighborhoods aired concerns of increasing property costs as properties in surrounding areas sell for higher and higher prices. Many testified that gentrification — including higher rents, property values and taxes — is making Pittsburgh unaffordable for residents of modest means.
Along those lines, a housing task force has said the city faces a shortage of about 17,000 affordable rental units for those earning below 50 percent of the area median income. The median amounts to roughly $35,600 a year for a family of four.
Read the full article at Pittsburgh council to vote within months on housing fund