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Reuters Article Cites Schleicher Research

A Reuters columnist draws from Professor David Schleicher's research in an article dealing with New York City's housing crisis, where demand outstrips supply by a wide margin, driving the cost of housing upward.

Columnist Reihan Salam approached Schleicher for an answer to the question of what New York might do to makes its housing more affordable.

Among Schleicher's suggestions is the "TILT," or tax-increment local transfer, which is described in Schleicher's paper,  "City Unplanning." Through a TILT the city can mollify unhappy neighbors by sharing with them a cut of the new property tax revenue generated by new developments. Citywide benefits of new development are shared with neighbors of the project, but there are no new taxes on development, thus preventing a rise in costs. Resulting new construction will increase overall property tax collections, even after residents in affected neighborhoods receive their cut. 

In New York, the rent doesn't have to be 'too damn high,' Reuters, August 23, 2013. By Reihan Salam.

Excerpt:
"The first and most obvious thing to do is to broaden area in which housing can be built. For example, Schleicher and Roderick Hills Jr. of New York University Law School observe that cities like New York use 'non-cumulative zoning' to dedicate desirable locations to low-value industrial uses. They propose allowing developers to replace empty warehouses, barely-used shipping facilities, and heavily subsidized factories with housing. Historical preservation districts severely restrict new housing development in many of New York City’s most desirable residential neighborhoods, which has contributed to rising housing prices. Though hardly anyone proposes getting rid of historical preservation districts entirely, the Harvard economist Edward Glaeser has made a strong case for limiting their growth.

"New York can also look to its own past, and to cities around the world like Tokyo and Hong Kong, and expand its turf through landfill development. Vishaan Chakrabarti, a veteran of the Bloomberg administration and director of the Center for Urban Real Estate at Columbia University, has championed the creation of an entirely new neighborhood (“LoLo”) that would stretch from the Battery at Manhattan’s southernmost tip to Governor’s Island. Bloomberg has himself floated the idea of new landfill neighborhood on Manhattan’s eastern edge, which he has dubbed 'Seaport City.'"

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