Housing frist: If you Build it thay will comeisn`t Just a Slogan


Mad Man Marlon - Posted on 14 October 2010

Author: 
By Bruce Allison and Thornton Kimes

HOUSING FIRST: IF YOU BUILD IT THEY WILL COME ISN'T JUST A SLOGAN

PNNscholar1 - Posted on 08 August 2010

By Bruce Allison and Thornton Kimes
San Francisco has a “Housing First” policy. The (very extended) Patel
family, which owns the vast majority of SRO hotel (Single Room
Occupancy: a.k.a. Poor People Housing) properties in the city, is
spitting in our faces by leaving SRO’s vacant for years. There is one
in the Mission (22nd and Mission, above the Ritmo music store, with 40
units), and one in SOMA—the already earthquake code-improved 100-200
unit four-story Chronicle Hotel (across the street from the
newspaper!) and the retail space under it.
Housing in the city translates into money spent in the city, including
jobs for people staffing SRO hotels; of course, getting the empty
Patel spaces clean and useable as living spaces would also generate
those oh-so-wonderful short-term (a.k.a. temporary) jobs the “job
creators” love to talk about (contractor stuff, construction…) too.
The SRO in the Mission only needs $500,000 (current costs) to be
returned to service. The electrical wiring is up to code. Sinks and
bathrooms would need to be installed. The SOMA space, abandoned for 20
years, used to have a blood plasma donation center on the ground
floor. Bruce and Thornton remember it well. A lot more money would
need to be sunk into it to make it liveable.
City services, funded by local, state, and federal taxes, would not be
strained by an effort made to maximize housing for poor people, the
tax base would be improved by it. This modest proposal would take
approximately 200 people off the streets. More would be better.

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