Editor: David Reiss
Brooklyn Law School

October 7, 2014

NYC, Note 12 Trends in Affordable Housing Design

By David Reiss

This story on The 12 Latest Trends in Affordable Housing is a bit different from those I usually post on the blog, but I like the pictures! The story opens,

It is no secret that the world’s urban population is picking up, and, in many cases, urban rent prices are rising with it. Architects are continually inventing new solutions to confront the challenges of maximum unit count paired with minimum budget, all the while incorporating architecture’s latest technologies and trends into the designs. Design, of course, can’t solve it all. Katharine Bristol argued in her 1991 essay “The Pruitt-Igoe Myth” that architects must evaluate the social and political structures that define public housing instead of simply agreeing to think inside the box. The following projects exemplify twelve trends architects are using to combat conventional public housing limitations.

It is worth clicking through for the pictures which of projects from all around the world.  The trends include

  1. Sustainable Design
  2. Green Roofs
  3. Atomized Grid
  4. Projecting Facade
  5. Splash of Color
  6. Accessibility for All
  7. Adaptive Reuse
  8. All Wood, All the Time
  9. New Takes on Traditional Materials
  10. Gardens in the Sky
  11. Window Treatments
  12. Low-Rise, High-Density

The difference between a wonderful affordable housing project and a soul-crushing one is often the little details that give character to a building, so that it can feel like a home.  As NYC embarks on an affordable housing building spree over the next ten years, this is something that should be kept at the forefront of the minds of those implementing the City’s housing plan.

HT NYU Furman Center

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