With a deficit of 32,000 housing units and a vacancy rate of 1.5%, Denver is in an affordable housing crisis of epic proportions. We need housing options that are affordable, attainable, and meet the needs of more people, including our low-income residents in Denver. This will require a fundamental restructuring of the city’s engagement in housing, including:
- A cabinet-level Housing Department administered by experts with deep experience
- A fully supported & transparent Comprehensive Fund, to coordinate the deployment of available resources and partnerships with other funding and tax credit providers. This would be a dedicated funding stream for new affordable units, preservation of existing units, and a higher per-unit subsidy.
- Preservation of our existing affordable and attainable housing stock, as opposed to incentivizing development that results in scrapes.
- Negotiating with corporate developers for affordable housing requirements at the front end, rather than the back end, and implement continued monitoring to ensure compliance with these commitments.
- Implementing participant-public-private partnerships, or P4 initiatives, which require the involvement of community members (participants), the government (public) and developers (private) in all decision-making.
In gentrifying neighborhoods, I will enact aggressive anti-displacement policies to protect our most vulnerable residents, including evidence-based policies that have been shown to slow hyper-gentrification: rent stabilization, tenant protection policies, and the establishment of community land trusts.