What dismantling the Postal Service will do to American cities
The post office is what urban designers call a “local public anchor institution.” It's a shared civic space accessible by and benefiting all without discrimination. Mailboxes unite the country under one aesthetic, and post offices highlight the rich diversity of American regionalism.
The post office shapes American public and private life in cities and towns, large and small. A dismantled USPS could erode American social ties, neighborhoods, and even families.
Fast Company • August 24, 2020
Two Black-led banks merge to form a $1 billion lender
On Wednesday, a merger was announced creating the nation's largest Black-controlled bank and the first with assets exceeding $1 Billion. Broadway Federal Bank, a Los Angeles-based commercial lender will combine with City First Bank in Washington, DC.
The expanded City First Bank will be the nation’s largest Black-controlled federally insured commercial lender and will specialize in three areas of financing: multifamily affordable housing, small businesses and non-profit development.
New York Times • August 26, 2020
Trump is going to war on low-income housing in suburbs. He once embraced it.
President Trump is on a mission to save the suburbs, warning Americans that Joe Biden would bring chaos to their communities by promoting affordable housing.
Yet just a year ago, the Trump administration itself embraced a plan to use the federal government to push local governments, including in suburban areas, to overhaul zoning rules that prevent the construction of high-density apartment buildings.
Politico • August 23, 2020
Prices rise for NY apartments with a must-have feature
In New York City, where early coronavirus lockdowns kept residents inside cramped apartments for months, apartments with terraces in Manhattan are selling for 5.4% more per square foot than those sold this year before the pandemic lockdown, according to data from appraiser Miller Samuel Inc.
Bloomberg • August 24, 2020
Multifamily starts soared in Q2 as homebuilder confidence hit record high
With much of life in the US now focused primarily in residential neighborhoods, it stands to reason that the business of homes is booming. New housing starts in July rose 22.6% over June, reaching an annual pace of 1.5 million units, the US Census Bureau said in its monthly residential construction report released on Tuesday. The jump was largely due to multifamily construction, which started work on 58% more units than it had in June.
Bisnow • August 19, 2020
PadSplit uses the Airbnb model to tackle the country's affordable housing crisis
To solve the problem of housing insecurity, PadSplit is borrowing a page from the Airbnb playbook by creating a marketplace where homeowners can list rooms for rent for long-term stays. The company’s renters include essential workers - teachers, grocery store employees, restaurant workers. Their average income is $25,000 annually.
PadSplit recently raised $10 million in new financing and is expanding into Texas. Currently, the company manages 1,000 units in Atlanta, and has expanded to Maryland.
TechCrunch • August 19, 2020