Inequality and Housing Mini-Update
1. Gothamist reports on how tax breaks and dollars help build luxury condos instead of affordable housing.
2. Hamilton Nolan wonders if California is going to start having slum cities. I normally don’t like Hamilton Nolan pieces but this is a rather solid view of the problems facing the California housing market and the possible solutions.
3. Brookings find that inequality in cities is more and more stark. The least unequal cities tend to be somewhat smaller population wise but they also tend to be mono(ish)-economies that have really good or really bad economies. Raleigh, North Carolina has a population of slightly under 450,000 people according to wikipedia and the biggest employers are either public/government entities, hospitals banks. Albuquerque is equal in the “we are all really poor” kind of way.
Colorado Springs seems to be a college town and a military town with a dash of tourism thrown in. The top 4 employers in Colorado Springs are all associated with the Air Force.
The dangers of mono or close to mono economies is that they can and do dry up. Maybe not tomorrow but eventually. The paradox though is that when they are thriving everyone seems to do okay. San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, and other major cities are more diverse in their economies but this also seems to create huge income inequality.
The question then becomes is it better to live in an area with a diverse but unequal economy or an economy where everyone is going to crash at the same time if industry leaves town?