It is no secret that New York City’s housing market is among the most dysfunctional in the nation—thanks to rent control, outdated zoning ordinances, an antiquated building code and complex land use regulations that turn NIMBYism into a fine art. The result? A year-in, year-out, housing gap that denies many New York City residents, especially middle-class residents, safe, affordable housing.
However, Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s administration has been a persistent advocate for housing construction, and low-interest rates have helped to galvanize a private sector building spurt in many sections of the city. Consequently, there is reason to hope that NYC’s housing gap may be closing rather than widening.
Peter Salins will describe the scope of New York’s current housing gap and explain how market-friendly housing reforms can boost the supply of affordable housing for New York’s much-ignored, but much-needed, middleclass residents.