• Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing
  • Volume 8, Number 1
  • Managing Editor: William R. Zachmann

Symposium

Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing

Advisory Board

Managing Editor: William R. Zachmann

Guest Editor: Edwin A. Stromberg


Elijah Anderson
University of Pennsylvania

Roy Bahl
Georgia State University

Ann Bowman
University of South Carolina

Henry A. Coleman
Rutgers University

Greg Duncan
University of Michigan

Amy Glasmeier
Pennsylvania State University

Norman J. Glickman
Rutgers University

Harvey Goldstein
University of North Carolina

Jane Gravelle
Congressional Research Service

Steven P. Hornburg
Research Institute for Housing America

Helen F. Ladd
Duke University

Wilhelmina A. Leigh
Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies

Laurence E. Lynn, Jr.
Texas A&M University

John Tuccillo
National Association of Realtors

Avis C. Vidal
The Urban Institute

Don Villarejo
California Institute for Rural Studies

Cityscape: A Journal of Policy Development and Research strives to share HUD-funded and other research on housing and urban policy issues with scholars, government officials, and others involved in setting policy and determining the direction of future research.

Cityscape focuses on innovative ideas, policies, and programs that show promise in revitalizing cities and regions, renewing their infrastructure, and creating economic opportunities. A typical issue consists of articles that examine various aspects of a theme of particular interest to our audience.

Foreword

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Research Conference on Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing was held on April 22, 2004, in Washington, D.C.

As an integral part of the Department's Affordable Communities Initiative, the conference assessed the state of regulatory barriers research to help the Department establish research priorities for overcoming regulatory barriers to affordable housing. Through a series of research papers, presenters discussed the limitations of the availability of affordable housing resulting from restrictive regulation of building construction, land use regulations, impact fees and exactions, environmental regulations, and administrative processes.

This publication includes the papers that were prepared for and delivered during the conference. The appendix includes discussant comments for several of the papers.

Guest Editor's Introduction

Edwin A. Stromberg
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
Office of Policy Development and Research

The recently released U.S. Housing and Development (HUD) report, "Why Not in Our Community?": Removing Barriers to Affordable Housing, has found that over the past 13 years many of the regulatory barriers originally documented in the 1991 report, "Not in My Backyard": Removing Barriers to Affordable Housing, still exist and may have worsened. The new report identifies how discriminatory, exclusionary, and unnecessary regulations continue to constitute barriers to affordable housing in communities throughout the United States. Because few significant and lasting improvements have occurred over the past decade, HUD realized that effectively addressing and redressing these barriers would require a concerted, nationwide, multifaceted effort.

Confronting the challenge of such an effort, HUD made a major commitment to barrier removal by launching the American Affordable Communities Initiative. Under this initiative, the Department assumed a leadership role in working with states and local communities to identify strategies to reduce regulatory barriers and mitigate their impact. The initiative's ambitious agenda includes working with governments, local housing groups, associations, and housing advocates on strategies for reducing regulatory barriers, including model regulatory approaches and systems; encouraging a public/private partnership to develop state and local coalitions and policies that can reduce barriers at the state and local level; and ensuring that the federal government, and HUD in particular, gets its own "house" in order by working to remove or reduce federal barriers to housing affordability. As part of this initiative, the Department is developing and implementing efforts to disseminate best practices, building coalitions interested in reducing barriers, reducing barriers at the federal level (particularly at HUD), and continuing to conduct and support much-needed research into regulatory barrier issues. Consequently, the initiative calls for working with HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R) to coordinate a large research effort to better understand the impacts of regulatory barriers and assess the success of strategies aimed at reducing them.

In seeking to craft an effective regulatory barriers research strategy, we in PD&R realized the first order of business was to assess the state of play of regulatory barriers research in this country. Although useful research on regulatory barriers certainly has been undertaken, the research typically is small in scale, narrowly focused, and intermittent. Moreover, only a small part of the potentially large research community has been engaged in regulatory barriers research. Consequently, the amount of sound, policy-oriented research has been disproportionately small compared to the seriousness of the problem.

An integral component of any such effort is sound, credible, persuasive research pinpointing the harmful impacts of these barriers on the affordable housing needs of communities and helping to point the way to overcoming these barriers.

To carry out this review and assessment of the state of play of regulatory barriers research, PD&R sponsored a meeting of the leading researchers to review what is known and what needs to be known about regulatory barriers research for such research to have a meaningful policy impact. This meeting, the Research Conference on Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing, convened on April 22, 2004, in Washington, D.C.

By all measures, the Research Conference on Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing achieved its objectives. The presenters' articles in this issue of Cityscape shed considerable light on what is known and offer a clear roadmap for future research endeavors; the commenters' articles in the Appendix sharpen and embellish the guidance for an effective regulatory barriers research agenda. Moreover, the introductory and wrap-up articles by Professor Michael H. Schill and the policy reflections of Jeffrey M. Lubell neatly summarize and frame the state of knowledge and the directions that regulatory barriers research can fruitfully take. We firmly anticipate that this volume can and will serve as a blueprint for much-needed research on this important issue.

For all those who contributed to this volume—the article writers and presenters, the commenters, the moderators, and other discussants—we extend our thanks and appreciation.

Regulations and Housing Development: What We Know
by Michael H. Schill

Building Codes and Housing
by David Listokin and David B. Hattis

The Effects of Land Use Regulation on the Price of Housing: What Do We Know? What Can We Learn?
by John M. Quigley and Larry A. Rosenthal

Impact Fees and Housing Affordability
by Vicki Been

Environmental Regulations and the Housing Market: A Review of the Literature
by Katherine A. Kiel

Regulatory Implementation: Examining Barriers From Regulatory Processes
by Peter J. May

The Policy Case for Research Into Regulatory Barriers: Reflections on HUD’s Research Conference on Regulatory Barriers to Affordable Housing
by Jeffrey M. Lubell

Regulations and Housing Development: What We Need To Know
by Michael H. Schill

Appendix

Response to "Building Codes and Housing" by David Listokin and David B. Hattis
by Carlos Martín

Response to "The Effects of Land Use Regulation on the Price of Housing: What Do We Know? What Can We Learn?" by John M. Quigley and Larry A. Rosenthal
by Robert C. Ellickson

Response to "The Effects of Land Use Regulation on the Price of Housing: What Do We Know? What Can We Learn?" by John M. Quigley and Larry A. Rosenthal
by William H. Kreager

Response to "Impact Fees and Housing Affordability" by Vicki Been
by William A. Fischel

Response to "Environmental Regulations and the Housing Market: A Review of the Literature" by Katherine A. Kiel
by James M. McElfish, Jr.

Response to "Environmental Regulations and the Housing Market: A Review of the Literature" by Katherine A. Kiel
by David Sunding

Response to "Regulatory Implementation: Examining Barriers From Regulatory Processes" by Peter J. May
by Harriet Tregoning

Regulatory Barriers Conference Roundtable Summary
by Steven P. Hornburg

 

 

Cityscape is published three times a year by the Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R) of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Subscriptions are available at no charge and single copies at a nominal fee. The journal is also available on line at http://www. huduser.gov/periodicals/cityscape.html.

PD&R welcomes submissions to the Refereed Papers section of the journal. Our referee process is double blind and timely, and our referees are highly qualified. The managing editor will also respond to authors who submit outlines of proposed papers regarding the suitability of those proposals for inclusion in Cityscape. Send manuscripts or outlines to Cityscape@hud.gov.

Opinions expressed in the articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of HUD or the U.S. government.

Visit PD&R’s website, www.huduser.gov, to find this publication and others sponsored by PD&R. Other services of HUD USER, PD&R’s research information service, include listservs, special interest and bimonthly publications (best practices and significant studies from other sources), access to public use databases, and a hotline (800–245–2691) for help with accessing the information you need.

Periodicals: