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Historic ARPA bill recognizes, invests in critical housing needs (Guest viewpoint)

Keith Fairey from Way Finders penned a guest column in MassLive noting that part of the state’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) money will be used for housing. He further quotes research done in 2021 by the Economic & Public Policy Research group that identifies current and possibly future gaps in housing availability in the Springfield region.

Housing options in our region are sparse while housing prices and racial disparities are high:

  • The current shortage of 11,000 housing units is projected to grow to 19,000 by 2025.
  • More than half of area renters were housing cost burdened (paying 30% or more of income on housing), which outpaces the state’s figures. Households of color in our region are disproportionately impacted, as 70% of Black and Hispanic households are renters compared to 30% of white households.

The second part of the UMDI housing study, to be released early next year, will dive more deeply into issues of segregation and opportunity. It will also highlight the gaps that exist between housing costs and household incomes and the impacts of COVID on housing in our region.

The Springfield study was inspired by previous research on the Boston regional housing environment that the institute did for The Boston Foundation. 

Read article: Historic ARPA bill recognizes, invests in critical housing needs (Guest viewpoint)

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