Highlights From The Affordable And Workforce Housing Conference in Dutchess County Part -2

Real Estate Broker/Owner with JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571 10491201242

At the Affordable and Workforce housing conference it was noted that 200 years of smart growth was phased out in the 1950's .  Prior to this period houses were constructed on a half acre or less. Many of the Dutchess County villages and hamlets are an example of this type of planning.  Then came sprawl.  The trend going forward will be once again compact or cluster development.

Some of the questions that will have to be considered are:

  • Where should the development go?
  • Who will it affect?
  • Is it a housing friendly area?
  • Is the infrastructure sufficient for sustainable growth?

It was also pointed out several times that affordable housing should be tied to land use, for example if land is to be put into a Land Trust some of the land should be set aside for affordable housing.

Examples were given of towns addressing the land use issue. Red Hook, for example, has been proactive in land preservation and have been actively involved with the purchase of property rights to save some of the farms in the area.

A very interesting point was made that smart growth is a two step process; many towns are doing the preservation part but have not fully addressed the second part, affordable housing.

Rhinebeck and Fishkill were two towns mentioned that have addressed affordable housing by including it in their master plan.  The point was made that any new development should include at least 10-20 percent of affordable housing.

Impediments to affordable housing were also discussed. They are:

  • Zoning
  • Property Taxes

What will the Hudson Valley need to do in the near future?

  • Address infrastructure- some towns lack a sewer system.
  • Zoning - many of our zoning laws are not family friendly
  • Change fundamentals to implement smart growth.

There is a fundamental demographic shift

  • 80 Million boomers near retirement - these people want to remain in the community but want homes with less maintenance.
  • Gen X and Y looking for a different kind of housing
  • Immigrants - smaller units, rentals and multi-family

The problem is that there is a disconnect in the marketplace, developers building homes that do not address these specific needs.  A major problem is the land use.  This is a fundamental that will have to change. So many times a housing need is identified but is denied by the town because it does not conform to the existing land use.

So with smart growth or compact growth we should see higher density units, redevelopment and infill of villages and hamlets. Robert Yaro demonstrated that the Hudson Valley should capitalize on its proximity to the largest metropolitan area, NYC.  After all NYC will need to partner with the Hudson Valley to meet affordable housing needs by 2030.

 Towns in MA and CT were cited as examples of areas where new incentives were given to provide affordable housing.  Once again it was mentioned that many of the existing zoning laws zone out families.  Another mechanism that has been used to address affordable housing is the establishment of Land Bank Communities, another development that is gaining ground is Transit Oriented Development which, as gas prices rise, will become even more important..

Now is a great time to plan for the next boom, therefore municipalities should retrofit existing approved developments to address affordable housing.

Another idea proposed was that towns should be proactive by getting generic SEQRA studies on areas identified as growth areas and assessing infrastructure needs.



Jennifer Fivelsdal - JFIVE HOMES REALTY LLC - 845-758-6842- jennifer@jfivehomes.com

www.jfivehomes.com or www.midhudsonhomevalue.com

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Copyright © by Jennifer Fivelsdal, all rights reserved-Highlights From The affordable And Workforce Housing Conference in Dutchess County Part 2







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Paddy (Patricia) Pizappi
Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty - Pine Bush, NY
Real Estate Associate Broker Hudson Valley NY

Thanks for part 2 of this report on the conference.  I really like the idea of the Land Trust balancing act with affordable housing units as part of the balance.  Good post

Jul 03, 2008 11:47 PM #1
Jennifer Fivelsdal
JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571 - Rhinebeck, NY
Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection

Paddy - I too thought that was a great idea.  My biggest surprise was that more in the real estate community did not participate.  I see real estate as more than just selling houses, it involves understanding the issues and knowing how future plans will affect housing.  As was mentioned at the conference this is the time to plan for the next boom.  I would hear of various town implementing certain laws but sometimes the explanation was  not very clear, the conference somehow put some of the pieces together for me and why? because many of the people involved in these processes were at the conference.

Jul 04, 2008 01:04 AM #2
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Jennifer affordable housing has to be planned for, it does not just happen by accident.  Unfortunately because of lack of planning subdivisions have been built in the name of affordable housing that had more to do with maximizing building lots and profit more so than affordability.

Jul 04, 2008 01:37 PM #3
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