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Cityscape: Volume 15 Number 2 | Article 9


Mixed Messages on Mixed Incomes

Volume 15 Number 2

Mark D. Shroder
Michelle P. Matuga

Mixed-Income Housing: Where Have We Been and Where Do We Go From Here?

Derek Hyra
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

These comments relate to the articles in this Cityscape symposium by Fraser, Chaskin, and Bazuin and by Kleinhans and van Ham.

For at least the past 20 years, the urban development field has put forth a substantial effort on investigating the merits (and shortfalls) of mixed-income housing. A key assumption that the field makes is that low-income people somehow benefit when high-, middle-, and low-income people live within the same neighborhood, census tract, or building (Joseph, 2006; Wilson, 1996). Scholars struggle with demonstrating whether this assumption and components of it are correct, however (Bacqué et al., 2011; DeFilippis and Fraser, 2010; Fraser and Kick, 2007; Graves, 2011; Joseph and Chaskin, 2010; Kleinhans, 2004; Tach, 2009). This timely symposium and, specifically, the two preceding articles, attempt to unpack, both domestically and abroad, some of the mechanisms by which mixed-income housing potentially produces favorable outcomes for neighborhoods and, in particular, low-income residents.

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