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Monday, June 4, 2012

93% of New Affordable Housing is East of 82nd

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Mon, Jun 4, 2012 at 12:59 PM

It's not just your rent that's gone up. The Oregonian spent months crunching the numbers on Portland's affordable housing and their series this weekend on the state of affairs is pretty shocking.

According to their analysis, the number of people using affordable housing has increased in Multnomah County over the past ten years—but 93 percent of the new enrollees are living east of 82nd. Meanwhile, Portland eastside neighborhoods west of 82nd lost more than 400 affordable housing spots, even as the number of rental properties in those inner neighborhoods increased. Part of the reason for this shift is that the county's public housing authority, Home Forward, has sold off units in more desirable Eastside neighborhoods and bought up units out in far East Portland.

What does this all mean? It means that the way Home Forward has been managing the city's affordable housing is making the city more economically segregated. Instead of keeping the walkable, livable parts of the Eastside affordable, the system has pushed low rents to the edge of the city. When people talk about Portland having problems with "equity," this is exactly the kind of shit they're talking about.

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