One problem that cities all across the country today face is the problem of affordable housing. Everywhere across the country individuals and families are unable to find homes they can afford which becomes a big problem in their lives for more than just the obvious reasons. Finding a job can become a very difficult task and if it is a family not having a home is unhealthy for the kids to grow up with. According to fhfund.org there are some 300,000 homes that are struggling to pay their housing costs here in Minneapolis. It also states that over 9,000 people in Minneapolis are homeless including over 2,000 children. It is obvious that this is a real and serious issue we face here in the Twin Cities.
Building new homes and saying they will be available to people with low incomes isn't quite as easy as it sounds. There are some factors that come into play including building costs and even finding land to build on. I am by far no expert in home construction but to me it seems that the construction costs can potentially be greatly reduced. With all of the waste that the world produces today there must be materials from all of that which can be reused. Plastic, for example, will many times be placed in landfills only to sit and not even decompose. There must be some way that all of the plastic can be reused in some way in the construction of a new home. If people could find what good materials are being thrown away and instead used them in constructing new homes costs would undoubtedly drop.
Another factor is finding places to build new homes. One solution I've thought of is for cities to look at the usage of all their land and see what plots are no longer in use. Many times there will be old buildings that were once in service but have long since been abandoned and sit there falling apart. Why not take this land back and use it for building some affordable housing? The materials could be reused from the old building or better yet if the building is still in good condition why not just remodel it and save the money on all the construction fees that would otherwise make the home not so affordable. You would be recycling the land and the materials that are already at the site also reducing transportation costs.
Below I have found some organizations who are involved in affordable housing.
Fun thing for the week