Scattered Sites: Seeking Housing Justice
$0 | 1LU|HSW
A continuation of an exploration of Baltimore’s hyper-segregated housing market, specifically public housing and the subsequent impact on its physical nature; its location, context, and architecture relative to other forms of government housing subsidies highlighting inequities regarding perceptions and access to single-family homes in neighborhoods throughout the greater metro Baltimore region. In addition, we will facilitate an understanding and awareness of housing as a right and underscore value based on social justice beyond aesthetics.
The affordable housing need for low-income residents is rising. Public housing across the country has lost approximately 400,000 units in the last twenty-five years while demand has increased, creating waiting lists of several years. And while there is a constant and pressing need to “find” a solution to the housing crisis; vacant properties languish, existing public housing units decay due to lack of funding for operations and maintenance, and low-income residents already facing devastating odds against their futures are assigned blame for derelict conditions not of their making or within their control. The stigma of living in public housing in the US is rife with classist and racist undertones.
The solution to affordable and equitable housing is not a single approach and needs to be as diverse as the population it serves while addressing the wide range of conditions in the built environment. After decades of social and design experimentation at the expense of people’s lives, a simpler, sustainable, and more humane approach to public housing is being implemented. Scattered site design, locating residents into “communities of opportunity” (defined by community health and economic and educational opportunity) is at the forefront of providing equitable and just housing to an underserved community.
“Scattered Sites; Seeking Housing Justice” will look at the history and evolution of public housing from its beginnings in the early 1930’s to today using Baltimore as a background and the City’s current approach to providing public housing, albeit mandated by consent decree, through integration of rental single-family homes in communities of opportunity.
Kathleen M. Lechleiter, AIA , President and Founder, Twopoint Studio, LLC, Baltimore, MD
Adjunct Professor, School of Architecture + Planning, Morgan State University, Baltimore, MD
Kathleen Lechleiter, AIA is an experienced professional with over 30 years of practice as a registered architect including work in the mid-Atlantic region with a focus on affordable and public housing. She centers her practice around providing residents stable places to live, building equity and achieving economic opportunity. Kathleen is an adjunct faculty at Morgan State University teaching in both the graduate and undergraduate program including the Housing Studio for the School of Architecture + Planning. She serves as the Board Chair for the Women’s Housing Coalition, a non-profit supporting families and individuals with permanent and affordable, service-enriched housing and as President of the Fells Point Design Review Committee advising on historic district projects.
Elsa Haarstad , Building & Sites Graduate Intern, Getty Conservation Institute, Los Angeles, CA
Elsa Haarstad is a Getty Graduate Intern at the GCI working with the Conserving Modern Architecture Initiative in Los Angeles. She is a recent graduate of the Master of Arts in Art History program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and has her M.A. in Historic Preservation from Goucher College in Baltimore, Maryland. Elsa’s research focuses on the history and theory of twentieth century housing and its preservation. She is interested broadly in mass housing as a site of significance and its mediation through art, film, design, and media. Before her graduate studies, Elsa was the Marketing and Research Coordinator for Twopoint Studio, an architecture firm in Baltimore.