URA Approves Landmark Affordable Housing Fund For Pittsburgh

Jan 11, 2018

In 2016, the city's Affordable Housing Task Force concluded Pittsburgh had a shortage of at least 15,000 low income units. 

On Thursday, the Urban Redevelopment Authority approved two significant funds to combat this issue.

The city of Pittsburgh agreed to provide $10 million a year to the URA to preserve and create affordable housing by funding projects that address the need. This agreement will last for 12 years.

URA Chairman Kevin Acklin said the money will mostly come from raising the Realty Transfer Tax by 0.5 percent.

"We made the hard votes, which were not easy, anytime you talk about taxation is difficult" Acklin said. "But we're dedicating this in a long-term manner to make sure our investments in affordable housing in the city are strategic."

The fund will invest in programs such as those that promote permanent affordability, prevent or reduce homelessness and increase accessibility to affordable housing for seniors and people with disabilities. A timeline for when money will go to these groups has not been released.

The URA also approved the creation of an Affordable Housing Fund for Upper Lawrenceville, which the Authority will manage.