Housing and Community Development

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Mariposa 1038 (Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects)

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The AIA Housing and Community Development Knowledge Community (HCD) is a network of architects and allied stakeholders that promotes equity in housing, excellence in residential design, and sustainable, vibrant communities for all, through education, research, awards, and advocacy.

Resiliency and Affordable Housing 

09-28-2021 10:50 AM

What responsibility should be placed on affordable housing when it comes to climate resilience planning and emergency preparedness? Should affordable housing play a role in broader community resiliency strategies, or should its responsibility be more inward-focused, providing only for its residents? Affordable housing is often tasked with solving many challenging problems for its broader community. Especially in projects with public funding, the goals and requirements for energy efficiency, accessibility, equity, etc. can be a high bar to reach. In addition to all these goals, designing and planning for climate hazards can be daunting and often seem financially infeasible. Yet, lower-income populations tend to experience increased exposure to climate hazards while also having a reduced capacity to adapt, making resilience planning in affordable housing all the more critical. From the perspectives of both the private and public sector, the panelists will share their experiences designing for resiliency in affordable housing. Case studies will range from retrofitting existing buildings to “climate-resilience hubs” in new construction, with a broader focus on how current policy shapes or supports these efforts. Participants will be encouraged to join in on a discussion about the potential role that affordable housing plays in larger neighborhood resiliency planning.

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