Urban Land Institute Welcomes New Americas Executive Committee Members
Annual changes to the ULI Americas Executive Committee announced.
ULI was invited by Canada Mortgage Housing Corporation, the Community Impact Real Estate Society (CIRES), and ULI British Columbia to Vancouver, British Columbia (BC) to convene a Virtual Advisory Services Panel (vASP) to address the intersection of work and housing in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside neighborhood. The panel was specifically tasked with making recommendations on safe, sustainable housing solutions for workers who are engaged in full-time employment or training and who are housing insecure.
Panelists were specifically asked to provide strategic recommendations on:
Date: June 28-30, 2021
Location: Vancouver, BC (virtual)
Sponsor: Canada Mortgage Housing Corporation, the Community Impact Real Estate Society (CIRES), ULI British Columbia. and the ULI Foundation
Subject Area: Affordable Housing and Employment
Panel Chair: Laura London, former Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing and Richard K. Green, University of Southern California Sol Price School of Public Policy
Vancouver, BC’s Downtown Eastside has a rich history of culture and community, having been home to indigenous populations and communities of color for decades. The Downtown Eastside neighborhood has also experienced significant removal and displacement driven by economic and policy decision-making. As a result, the neighborhood currently experiences high rates of residents facing precarious employment and housing and heightened illicit activity. Despite these challenges, there remains a strong sense of pride in the Downtown Eastside, championed by longtime residents and local business owners. This is illustrated in the dedicated efforts within the community to address the current challenges, as conveyed to the panel by stakeholders.
The panel’s recommendations are anchored in honoring the history and resilience of the Downtown Eastside neighborhood. This includes recognition of indigenous populations, acknowledging historically originated patterns of discrimination and dispossession, and lifting and strengthening human dignity as central tenets. The panel also notes the importance of the city of Vancouver’s presence in addressing the presented challenges, particularly when addressing issues of affordable housing and housing creation. Panelists acknowledge the importance of expanding their conceptualization of the problem beyond the Downtown Eastside neighborhood to conceive of sustainable solutions while remaining rooted in addressing challenges specific to the area. Recommendations fall into two broad categories: (1) Commitment to production and affordability and (2) Enhancing and strengthening housing and employment-focused supportive services.
The panelists’ key recommendations include the following:
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