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Mayor Fenty Pledges 10,000 Units of Affordable Housing

Monday, July 16, 2007
Press Advisory for Immediate Release

(Washington, DC) Mayor Adrian M. Fenty on Monday pledged to create and preserve 10,000 units of affordable housing during the next four years.

“We have an affordable housing crisis in the District and we need aggressive policies to ensure that people at all income levels can both afford to come to our city and stay in our city,” said Mayor Fenty.

During an evening meeting with members of the Washington Interfaith Network, Mayor Fenty committed to creating 5,000 new units of affordable homeownership housing for families earning between $20,000 and $75,000 per year, as well as preserving an additional 5,000 units in transitioning neighborhoods where housing prices have dramatically increased in recent years.

The contracts on nearly half of the District’s 11,100 units of federally subsidized housing are set to expire this year. The Fenty Administration is committed to monitoring these properties to assure the continuation of the subsidy, either by purchasing the properties or finding new owners willing to permanently preserve the properties as affordable.

Mayor Fenty committed $117 million in new funds each year to pay for these initiatives. The administration is weighing a series of funding streams including leveraging the value of District-owned land to require that 30 percent of all housing units built on city-owned property are sold or rented at affordable levels. The administration is also considering collecting fees on condo conversions, setting aside proceeds from Tax Increment Financing deals and dedicating a portion of the commercial property taxes to finance affordable housing creation and preservation.

This fall, the administration expects to unveil plans to create more than 2,500 units of supportive housing for homeless families and individuals living in the District.