Policy Summit 2021: Pathways to Economic Resilience in Our Communities
When & Where
June 23–25, 2021
Read what’s on the minds of those involved in Policy Summit 2021.
We asked three questions, Policy Summit speakers and partners answered.
Policy Summit speakers and partners add their insights to our Notes from the Field, informal observations about what our Community Development team is seeing and hearing on the ground.
Shared Equity Affordable Homes Unlock Racial Equity for All by Tony Pickett, Grounded Solutions Network, and Julius Kimbrough Jr., Crescent City Community Land Trust
Building Resilient Communities Takes a Network: Group Shares Success Stories, Resources, and Opportunities to Connect by Jacqueline Corum and Donna Daniels, Brushy Fork Leadership Institute at Berea College
Investing in Community-Driven Solutions Key to Pandemic Recovery by Lisa Much, Ohio CDC Association
Keeping Homes Affordable: “Show Us Your Resilience” Photo Submission
Where do you see resilience? We welcomed Policy Summit 2021 speakers and partners to share one or more photographs that represent resilience to them. Here are images from Ashley Allen of The Houston Community Land Trust. She’s speaking at the June 23–25 event.
Acres Homes, a historically African American neighborhood, was founded in 1918. Until 1967, it was the largest unincorporated African American community in the South. Though it is less than 20 minutes from downtown Houston, the neighborhood was once considered “in the country,” with many residents owning chickens, hogs, and horses. Even today, it’s not uncommon to see residents riding their horses on the neighborhood’s streets. Acres Homes is mainly comprised of single-family homes, and many residents have neighborhood ties that span multiple generations.
Because of urban sprawl, Acres Homes’ location is attractive to developers who are taking advantage of the low-cost land and building homes that far exceed the affordability of its current residents. To ensure this community’s residents are not priced out of their own neighborhood, Houston Community Land Trust (HCLT), the City of Houston, and Houston Land Bank have developed the New Home Development Program (NHDP), which has constructed 41 three-bedroom, two-bathroom homes that are available only to individual homebuyers who meet certain income requirements. In making outside investors ineligible to purchase the homes, NHDP is providing permanent affordability in a community that is experiencing gentrification.
Because of NHDP there are 29 HCLT homeowners in Acres Homes. Despite years of disinvestments and now rapid reinvestment, Acres Homes has demonstrated resilience by remaining a close-knit, single-family home community where people can still ride their horses to the store and sit on their porches and chat with neighbors. Sadly, many Houston neighborhoods are losing their historic identity in the wake of rapid development, increased investment, and gentrification. By utilizing the community land trust model, we can retain affordable housing for the residents who have kept Acres Homes a historic Houston neighborhood.