Curbed, July 19, 2021
“Faced with a long road to a full and equitable economic recovery, New York City needs bold and actionable ideas that can be implemented right now,” notes the nonprofit Center for an Urban Future in the introduction to its new report, “Comeback City, 250 Ideas from New Yorkers to Revive NYC’s Economy, Spark Good Jobs, and Build a More Equitable City.” It surveyed 175 prominent people (executives, activists, restauranteurs, architects, politicians) and asked them for ideas; some are more practical than others, but all build on a faith in the resilience and potential of urban life. The full report is here, or peruse our selection of 25 that we found in various ways intriguing, from “feminist housing” to the establishment of a city “Department of Care.” Oh, and free subways, too.
7. Fund a “feminist housing plan.” –Jessica Katz, executive director, Citizens Housing & Planning Council
To counter the disproportionate economic impacts of the pandemic on women, city officials should roll out a feminist housing plan to support low-income women living in New York’s affordable housing. The working definition of affordable housing in New York City requires 30 percent of household income to go toward rent. However, New York’s high cost of food, clothing, medical costs, transportation, and child care put added pressure on women and single-parent households, populations who are more likely to be low-income and have less to spare after rent contribution. The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) should reformulate the definition of “affordable” to account for additional expenditures, income level, and household configuration to better support the economic recovery of women and single-parent households.