Metro's Affordable Housing Team Shares Goals, Progress

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Joint Development team updated the Metro Board of Directors today on its affordable housing program's goals and progress.

Through its Joint Development Program, Metro seeks to create ``transit-oriented affordable housing'' near Metro stations.

According to their Joint Development Affordable Housing Policy Paper, which was delivered to the board Wednesday, the program has completed 2,200 units of housing, 34% of which are considered affordable, according to Metro's website. It defines ``affordable housing'' as units for people who earn 60% or less than the Los Angeles County Area Median Income (AMI).

Including projects that are in the pipeline, Metro's portfolio consists of 4,700 units, 37% of which will be affordable.

Metro anticipates its portfolio to double over the next decade with the acquisition of 40 new sites. The program's goals focus on:

-- increasing opportunity for people of all income levels to work, live and shop near transit;

-- providing access to opportunity for people who need it most;

-- delivering housing as soon as possible and with the least amount of environmental impact; and

-- leading in housing innovations.

The group's research has found that Los Angeles County has a 350,000 housing unit deficit, and there are more than 100,000 units required for people who earn less than 50% AMI. Over 50,000 units are needed for people earning between 50% and 80% AMI, and 150,000 units are needed for people who earn more than 120% AMI. The group believes there is a need for market rate units along with subsidized units in Los Angeles.

They have identified potential policy and process tools for the project going forward, including:

-- prioritizing communities with the most need and pursuing development of 100% income-restricted sites;

-- expanding the definition of ``affordable'' to include households earning up to 80% AMI;

-- redefining ``moderate income housing'' to include households earning between 80% and 120% AMI; and

-- streamlining processes to deliver units faster.

The Joint Development team is seeking feedback ahead of its Transit Oriented Communities Town Hall in March. The entire policy paper can be read at: and feedback can be submitted to

Photo: Getty Images

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