More than 60 regional mayors and homebuilders gather in Schaumburg in December to discuss strategies for cooperation and partnerships on housing.
Cooperation was the theme of the day when, for the third
time in as many years, municipalities and homebuilders gathered at Roosevelt
University's Schaumburg campus for an unique conversation on the subject of
building and preserving an array of housing options for the region's diverse
population. More than 60 elected officials and developers attended the
forum, entitled "Cooperation and Partnerships: A Conversation with Mayors and
Developers on Innovative, Collaborative Strategies for Getting Deals Done."
As in past years, the event was co-sponsored by the Metropolitan Planning Council, Metropolitan Mayors Caucus, Home Builders Association of Greater Chicago, Illinois
University's Marshall Bennett Institute of Real Estate.
participants a feel for tackling a development scenario that is becoming all too familiar
in the Chicago region, they were asked to plan a housing deelopment in
Oakwood, a fictional suburban community with an aging rental development
in need of redevelopment (rendering below). Participants were assigned a role -
mayor, market-rate developer, affordable housing developer, etc. - and challenged to create a deal
that met with approval. They were provided with several new tools, the "Good
Housing, Good Schools" bonus, IHDA's
new "AHPAA-At-Risk" Point, and an interjurisdictional housing trust fund
(similar to the ARCH model
from Washington state), as well as more standard options such as Tax Increment
Financing, land donation, and density bonuses.
forums also stressed the value of cooperation, but this year's session was a
valuable exercise in forming partnerships and hammering out the give-and-take
needed to create consensus. In parting, participants received a draft
chapter from the upcoming Housing 1-2-3: A Workbook for Local Officials and
Community Leaders and were asked to review it through the lens of the day. The
chapter detailed past collaborations from around the region, such
as Highland Park's Hyacinth Place (pictured below), a 14-home, mixed-income
development that resulted from a partnership between the Highland Park
Community Land Trust, Housing Opportunity Development Corporation, and Brinshore
After 90 minutes of avid discussion, each group had reached consensus.
While each group produced a unique deal, there were several similarities between
- They preserved rental opportunities, but created a
greater mix of homes and wider price range.
- Local employers invested in their workforce through Employer-Assisted
- Transit-oriented development effectively captured the
real estate value of transit stations.
- New and old incentives, when paired, reduced overall
development costs and produced a healthy bottom line.
- New tools, particularly the "Good Housing, Good Schools" bonus and the interjurisidictional housing
trust fund, were very effectively used
to build community support and leverage needed resources.
- Market-rate and affordable housing developers
partnered to create mixed-income, and often mixed-use, housing opportunities.
- When possible, existing buildings were preserved or
- Cooperation between the public and private spheres was an effective
strategy for building and preserving affordable homes.
For more information on this annual series or on Housing 1-2-3,
contact Josh Ellis, MPC community development associate, at (312) 863-6045 or email@example.com; or Beth
Dever, Metropolitan Mayors Caucus housing director, at (312) 201-4507 or firstname.lastname@example.org.