To the Editor:
The Coalition for Equitable Community Development is an association of Hyde Park & Kenwood residents, businesses, religious communities and civic organizations who are concerned about the loss of affordable housing in our community. The University has shared its plans for the development of the partly-vacant site on 53rd Street commonly called the “McMobil” site. As shown in our recently completed Affordable Rental Housing Market Study, Hyde Park and South Kenwood are in need of more rental housing to meet the needs of its low and moderate income families and seniors. We are grateful to see that this development will result in 57 affordable apartments. These units will serve individuals earning up to $31,000/yr, or a two person household earning up to $35,000/yr. A few of the apartments will be available to individuals earning up to $41,000 or two persons earning up to $47,000.
In order to achieve these numbers, the developer will need to build at a density that is higher than some in our community would prefer. However, we support the proposal because it takes density to provide affordable housing, and it takes affordable housing to maintain the economic diversity Hyde Park values. The new development will allow 57 families to find affordable housing in our community. These are our neighbors who will be priced out of our community if we don’t have the density to finance affordable units.
We applaud the university for choosing a developer who will build these affordable housing units on the site and create a mixed-income development. City ordinances allow the option of paying in lieu of building actual units. But they didn’t go that route. We should all be grateful for that.
CECD Board Members
Rahsaan Clark Morris