Blog

The Shelterforce blog (formerly known as Rooflines) is a forum for voices in the community development, affordable housing, community organizing, neighborhood revitalization, and related fields to challenge each other and other stakeholders; share ideas, successes, and failures; and pose questions to one another. Learn how you or your organization can submit a post.

With Merger, Enterprise Expands Financing for “Workforce” Housing, Commercial

Enterprise Community Investment, the for-profit financing subsidiary of Enterprise Community Partners, has merged with Bellwether Real Estate Capital to form Bellwether...

9-28-11 Poll: How do conflicting market data affect your neighborhood stabilization efforts?

You said: “Sadly, we may know our economy, but the funding sources require us to use the economists or market study data that may...
An image that says "Stop Gentrification in Pilsen."

NPR: “Gentrification May Be a Boon To Longtime Residents”

Studies say that gentrification could be a good thing for low-income residents, but people suffer when they can't afford to stay in their neighborhood. So what's up with these studies?

My Berlin Wall Moment

It took me a couple of days after the extraordinary evening of President-elect Obama’s victory on November 4 for the impact to really sink...

It�s Time To Adjust To The Metropolitan Reality

One of the recurring themes of my writing (for example, here) has been that, to achieve sustainability in our cities,...

Stumbling to Solidarity

It’s been an exciting year in labor organizing, between the Chicago teachers strike, Port of Oakland shut downs, Wal-Mart walkouts,...

Duty to Serve = Your Duty to Comment

In gridlocked Washington, rarely does one have the ability to truly influence community development or housing policy. Well, wait...

Working in Partnership

[Editorial note: In commemoration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Rooflines has chosen to share an essay from the Shelterforce archives. Co-written by Julian Bond, Jesse Jackson, Jr. and John Taylor in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the decade-old essay shows us that the reality for millions of Americans in poverty has not changed very […]
Residents of four historically African-American neighborhoods hold up a sign that reads "This Land is Our Land! #TentCityATL"

A Community Benefits Proposal Is Ignored. Is Displacement Far Behind?

Residents of four historically African-American neighborhoods in Atlanta are in the midst of an occupation of Turner Field—the former home of the Atlanta Braves.

In Troubled Times, Taking Stock of Our Community Wealth

In thinking about how to face the current federal environment, it might be helpful to take stock of where gains have occurred. Among these growth areas are:

Covered Bridge: A Program That Keeps the Elderly in Their Homes

Nonprofit housers need to think gray in a new way. It has long been predicted that a demographic wave of retirement-age Americans would soon be breaking upon the shores of our communities. It has now arrived. Despite being forewarned, most communities are poorly prepared to meet the housing needs of this cohort. That is especially […]
four people on a stage

Expanding Community Benefits Agreements to Events

Shelterforce spoke with Race Forward’s Leslie Grant-Spann to find out what it means to have a community benefits agreement for an event, and why it’s important to think about the local impacts of large events.

Government on the Ropes—Nonprofits Step In

The loss of community development staff working at the City of Flint, Michigan, threatened the existence and continuity of...

A Big Easy Comparison, But How Similar?

“Katrina” is a loaded word, less associated with an actual hurricane than it is with catastrophic destruction from natural disaster, breathtaking flaws in effective...

Not Your Clinton’s Foreclosure Holiday

First the gas tax holiday, then the Columbus Day holiday, now again with the foreclosure holiday. Everyone should be wary of “holidays” in taxation...

Getting the Mortgage Market Back on Track

Of all the things government can and should do about housing, creating a strong, responsive mortgage market may be more...

Three Ways Not to Transform Parks — And One That Can Work

Back when I was a local reporter, I witnessed the unfortunate demise of a beloved neighborhood park in Malden, Massachusetts. Frederick Law Olmsted Jr....

A Bipartisan Look at Demographics that Drive Housing Demand

Earlier this week the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) released its Housing Commission Report: Housing America’s Future: New Directions for National Policy.  As an advisor...

A Fair Approach to Fair Housing

When we received Shelterforce’s newsletter a month ago with ‘Section 8 Ghetto’ in the subject line, we were quite...

Countrywide CEO’s Cyberblunder

We hear it a lot these days, the Dante Alighieri quote that declares that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who...