Leading the Way II: A Report On Boston's Housing Strategy Fy 2004 - Fy 2007
In the January 1999 State of the City address, Mayor Thomas M. Menino acknowledged Boston's growing housing shortage and declared housing to be a top priority for City action. He created a new cabinet level position, Chief of Housing, and challenged the City and development community to work together to double housing production from under 900 units to 2,000 units in just one year.
That commitment to housing has continued to this day. In the last three years, under the auspices of the first Leading the Way (LTW I) housing strategy, Boston has added more than 7,900 units of new housing. Of those, more than 2,200 are affordable new units. Another 5,000 households were protected from displacement through City efforts to prevent their subsidized apartments from becoming market rate. Virtually all of the Boston Housing Authority's vacant units are now being reclaimed to create new housing, particularly for the homeless.
With the generous help of the housing experts who comprised the Mayor's Advisory Panel on Housing, Boston is moving forward with a new four-year plan that builds on the best of what was done in the past and has evolved to meet the challenges that we face today. Among those challenges are a softer economy with rising unemployment, ever-tightening local, State and Federal budgets with cuts in many programs, and an emerging crisis in the Section 8 Rental Assistance Program where Federal cuts are leading to a nationwide crisis in the program. Despite these challenges, the Menino administration is committed to doing everything it can to continue making progress in housing. This strategy, called Leading the Way II (LTW II), is that commitment. (Author)
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