Back in 2004, Elio Ciampanella was evicted from his apartment of three decades...So he applied for an apartment in Rome’s public housing. And he waited. More than a decade passed.
Then, in February, [Ciampanella] unexpectedly had his choice of several apartments. His tale might be considered one of patience rewarded, but there was a twist: It turned out Rome’s municipal government never really had a shortage of properties. — the New York Times
"Instead, the government actually owned so many thousands of apartments and buildings that no one was quite certain how many there were, who lived in them or where they were. That was, until staff members for Rome’s new interim administrator, Francesco Paolo Tronca, discovered nine boxes...
In an order that sends a strong message against corruption, the Bombay High Court on Friday ordered the Union Environment Ministry to demolish 31-storey Adarsh Co-operative Housing Society. [...]
The society, originally meant to be a six-storey structure to house Kargil war heroes and war widows, was converted into a 100-metre-tall building with politicians, bureaucrats and army officers allegedly conspiring to get flats allotted to them in the cooperative society at below-market rates. — The Times of India
Click here to learn more about the Adarsh Housing Society scam and corruption scandal.Related stories in the Archinect news:Top 13 floors of India's tallest skyscraper were built illegally, High Court saysIndia on the brink: what's in store for the country's architectural futureWorld's first Slum...
[Berkowitz is now] offering custom pods for sale on Craigslist for people who want to make money with AirBnB or have their own subletters. [...]
The Department of Building Inspection reached out ... confirming that the pods are illegal and a violation of housing, building, and fire safety codes. [...]
"He would have to completely open it up or look at something different, such as a bed with a frame, with curtains, something that was open to the room." [...]
"there are fire safety realities." — Hoodline
You may remember Peter Berkowitz's name from the not-an-April-Fools-Day post we made a couple weeks ago, reporting on the box freelance illustrator Berkowitz had constructed to live in his friends' apartment, at $400 a month. After the news took off, he had begun testing the waters in the rest of...
bastardized visual language has become the de facto standard of Dallas residential architecture development. The explanation for its ever-increasing prevalence, however depressing, is fairly straightforward. Developers find something that’s profitable and want to reproduce it. Risk-averse banks are happy to lend them money given their track record, at least in the short term. Architects, stuck with low budgets, tight schedules, and conservative developers, serve to please and follow convention. — artsblog.dallasnews.com
"But Dallas architecture shouldn’t be a joke, and it doesn’t have to be. A look at recent developments in Los Angeles, a historically auto-centric city faced with similar growth challenges, suggests how Dallas might break the vicious cycle in which it is mired."Related stories in the...
In new guidance, released Monday, HUD tells landlords and home sellers that turning down tenants or buyers based on their criminal records may violate the Fair Housing Act.
People with criminal records aren't a protected class under the Fair Housing Act... but blanket policies of refusing to rent to anybody with a criminal record are de facto discrimination, the department says — because of the systemic disparities of the American criminal justice system. — NPR
"Because of widespread racial and ethnic disparities in the U.S. criminal justice system, criminal history-based restrictions on access to housing are likely disproportionately to burden African-Americans and Hispanics." - New HUD guidance on criminal records and the Fair Housing ActFor related...
With the median rent for a one-bedroom apartment at $3,670 a month, the city’s housing crisis has pushed frugal renters to the edge of their comfort limits.
From tents to trucks, the next logical step in San Francisco has taken shape — in the form of a literal box. [...]
“I really don’t feel like I’ve taken a hit in terms of my quality of life,” said Berkowitz, 25. “I don’t really notice I live in the pod anymore.” — washingtonpost.com
More on the extreme lengths of SF housing:Silicon Valley is set to get over 10K more housing units – is this the beginning of the end of its housing crisis?Shipping container village crops up in Oakland, offering alternative to sky-high SF rentsAirbnb rentals cut deep into San Francisco housing...
A first-in-the-nation complex to be built in Hollywood would house about 200 LGBT seniors and young adults on the same campus.
Lorrie Jean, CEO of the the Los Angeles LGBT Center, which is building the $100 million complex, calls the two generation groups "the two most vulnerable parts of our community." — scpr.org
Related stories in the Archinect news:As "gayborhoods" gentrify, LGBTQ people move into conservative AmericaHomes of the homeless, seized: L.A. cracks down on free housingToilets for everyone: the politics of inclusive design
Buy-to-let landlords should face new limits on the amount they can borrow, the Bank of England has proposed.
It suggested that lenders should be much stricter when deciding whether or not to grant landlords a mortgage.
Instead of just taking their rental income into account, the Bank wants lenders to look at their wider financial situation as well.
If adopted, the new rules could reduce lending to landlords by up to 20% over the next three years. — BBC
According to the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), the newly-proposed standards should "curtail inappropriate lending, and the potential for excessive credit losses."The new strictures would take into account the costs a landlord accrues in order to rent a property, tax liabilities associated...
Rapidly rising property prices and rents, combined with the loss of social housing through right to buy, have put councils under growing pressure to find new ways to help people off their housing lists.
In Lewisham one solution is a £4.3m scheme to provide 24 homes and 880 sq m of business space that can be picked up and moved at a later date, allowing the council to make use of vacant brownfield land while longer-term projects are finalised. — theguardian.com
This got us thinking about what it takes to build an ideal town: should pubs be on every residential corner or on the high street? How many trendy coffee shops are too many? Are libraries still a thing? We didn't have the answers to any of those questions, so we spoke to Matt Richards – a planner at property consultancy Bidwells – to find out what makes the perfect town. — VICE
Related stories in the Archinect news:Turning the “ugliest building in Liverpool” into an exemplar of public healthUrbanism as a public health issue: Oklahoma City's battle with obesityJan Gehl's perspective on making "a good urban habitat for homo sapiens"How urban designers can better...
Since I think there are a lot of folks out there who genuinely haven't made up their minds about the initiative, or aren’t familiar with it yet, I'd like to summarize some of the most important reasons to oppose it when it comes time to vote this November. - — Better Institutions
The looming battle for the future of development in Los Angeles is becoming more and more pronounced. One wonders if the public will ever grasp the relevance to their lives and vote with reliable information in coming November for this crucial issue?In this age of rapid commodification of the...
It's hard to remember that just a few decades ago it was difficult, if not impossible, for a woman alone to take out a mortgage. Federal legislation changed that.
And yet, it's still surprising to learn how dominant single women have become in the housing market today: Their share is second only to married couples, and twice that of single men. — npr.org
Parisian designer Stéphane Malka Architecture has suggested creating affordable housing in the French capital by adding prefabricated elements on top of and between existing buildings.
The “3box” system does not require the purchase of sites. Instead, the right to build is obtained in exchange for renovating existing buildings.
According to Stéphane Malka, the housing would cost 40% less than the usual market price and could be built quickly and cheaply in workshops. — Global Construction Plan
"The units would work with a new Parisian law, the Loi ALUR, which states that 70,000 new dwellings should be built each year, and that rents should be stabilised."Interested in other novel housing solutions? Check out some related Archinect coverage:To each their own home: A peek into the...
In a fresh bid to confront a problem that has confounded lawmakers for decades, Los Angeles city and county officials approved sweeping plans Tuesday aimed at getting thousands of homeless people off the streets.
But one crucial question remains unanswered: Where will most of the money come from? [...]
The renewed government attention to homelessness was spurred in part by a 12% surge in people living on the streets [...] pushing the total to more than 44,000 homeless people countywide. — latimes.com
Previously in the Archinect news:"It’s about recognizing someone as existing": Photo exhibit depicts L.A.'s homelessness crisisLA's freeway system is becoming an increasingly crowded 'neighborhood' for the city's homelessLos Angeles to declare homelessness in the city an 'emergency' and pledge...
Tens of thousands of hard-working families will be forced to leave their council homes and find themselves unable to afford a local alternative as a result of government plans to restrict social housing to the poorest, according to research obtained by the Observer.
The devastating figures...show that almost 60,000 households in England will be unable to afford to remain in their council properties from April next year, as a result of George Osborne’s reform, called “pay to stay”. — the Guardian
The economy, coupled with concerted political efforts to dismantle what's left of the welfare state, has birthed a veritable housing crisis in London and the rest of the UK. According to new figures, "pay to stay", a plan crafted by George Osborne, the Conservative MP for Tatton, will leave an...
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