Following a public kickoff event in April 2021, UVA's Affordable Housing project consultant collected input from dozens of community stakeholders through a listening tour that included both one-on-one and small group discussions over several months.
General themes include affordability; economic opportunity; services; diversity, equity and inclusion; trust and transparency; collaboration; and sustainability.
The notes below reflect what we have heard so far from members of the community about their desires related to affordable housing and what is important to them. We will continue to gather input to inform development principles for UVA's Affordable Housing initiative.
- Single-family homes, multi-family homes, and townhomes should be offered at all tiers of affordability, with opportunities to rent or to buy.
- Creative solutions and/or affordable homeownership are a priority, with consideration given to providing opportunities for marginalized groups.
- Developments should include childcare, educational services, and other programs that will benefit residents and the larger community.
- Developments should include retail and businesses that can serve residents and, where appropriate, the larger community.
- Small, Women, and Minority-Owned (SWaM) and underrepresented businesses should benefit from development and construction activity.
- Local residents should benefit from professional services contracts and construction employment.
- Diversity, equity, and inclusion matter. A diverse cross-section of community members (in terms of class, race, and education level) should participate in the planning process for each project.
- Racial and income equity should be considered in programming for each development.
- The history of each site should be documented and preserved and the history of inequity in Charlottesville's culture should be acknowledged.
- Developers should work closely with the community and communicate regularly during the development planning process.
- There should be regular communication of development activities with community members to create trust.
- Collaboration with local partners is highly valued and working with neighborhood groups is essential.
- Municipalities should embrace the initiative to facilitate expeditious approvals.
- Developers should incorporate sustainable practices in the design and construction of each site to create long-term efficiencies and protect the environment.
Date collected: Spring - Summer 2021
Source: Gina Merritt, NREUV