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LABC Livable Communities Report

LABC Livable Communities Report

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2013 LivableCommunities Report:
 A CALL TO ACTION
Introducing the Opportunity Index and ProposedSolutions for L.A.'s Project Financing Challenges
 
2
Acknowledgments
The LABC Institute is pleased to present
The 2013 Livable Communities Report: A Call to Action 
and gratefullyacknowledges Bank of America, the California Community Foundation, Gensler, and JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Livable Communities Advisory Committee
Kyle Arndt,
Real Estate Attorney & Founding Partner,
Bocarsly Emden
Tara Barauskas,
Director of Housing,
A Community of Friends
Ellen Berkowitz,
Shareholder,
Gresham Savage
Kelli Bernard,
Interim Chief of Economic Development,
Office of Mayor Eric Garcetti
Linda Bernhardt,
Senior Advisor,
DLA Piper
Ken Bernstein,
Manager, Office of Historic Resources,
City of Los Angeles' Department of City Planning
Eric Brown,
Director, Intergovernmental and Media Relations,
Housing Authority, City of Los Angeles
Brad Cox,
Director,
Trammell Crow Company
Sarah Dusseault,
Strategic Policy Advisor 
Amy Freilich,
Partner,
Armbruster Goldsmith & Delvac LLP
Dora Leong Gallo,
Executive Director,
A Community of Friends
David Grunwald,
Executive Director,
Affordable Living for the Aging
Doug Guthrie,
President and CEO,
Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles
Kathe Head,
Managing Principal,
Keyser Marston Associates
Calvin Hollis,
Executive Officer, Countywide Planning and Development,
LA Metro
Bea Hsu,
Senior Vice President, Development,
Related California
John Huskey,
President,
Meta Housing Corporation
Fran Inman,
Senior Vice President,
Majestic Realty Co.
Allan Kingston,
Vice Chairman,
National Community Renaissance
Lincoln Lee,
Development Services,
Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety
Borja Leon,
Director of Transportation,
Office of Mayor Garcetti
Mary Leslie,
President,
Los Angeles Business Council
Jacob Lipa,
President,
Psomas
Antonio Manning,
Region Executive West and Southwest Global Philanthropy,
JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Mercedes Márquez,
General Manager,
Housing & Community Investment Department of Los Angeles
Tony Mendoza,
Senior Supervising Planner,
Parsons Brinckerhoff
Eric Metz,
Partner,
Urban One
Hilary Norton,
Executive Director,
Fixing Angelenos Stuck in Traffic (FAST)
Tim O'Connell,
Senior Director Policy and Advocacy,
Century Housing
Bud Ovrom,
Los Angeles Convention Center
Maurice Ramirez,
Executive Vice President,
AMCAL Multi-Housing, Inc.
Kevin Ratner,
President,
Forest City Residential West
Dan Rosenfeld,
President,
George Crenshaw Development Company
Tony Salazar,
President, West Coast Operations,
McCormack Baron Salazar Inc.
Jeff Schaffer,
Vice President,
Enterprise Community Partners
Ann Sewill,
Vice President,
Housing and Neighborhoods, California Community Foundation
Richard Ziman,
Founding Chairman,
Rexford Industrial RealtySpecial thanks to the report’s author, Paul Habibi, UCLA Anderson School of Business. Thank you also to BenFeingold and Jessica Hencier, Urban One; Steve Sugerman and Randy James, Sugerman CommunicationsGroup, Sumi Parekh, Los Angeles Business Council; and Nephew, LLC. All stakeholders contributed greatlyin terms of thought and input to the final report, however errors are sole property of the author.
 
3
2013 Livable Communities Report: A Call to Action
Executive Summary
In October 2012, the Los Angeles Business Council (LABC) released the report
Building Livable Communities: Enhancing Economic Competitiveness in Los Angeles 
(2012 Report). The 2012 Reportcontemplated the connections between jobs, housing, and public transit throughout Los Angeles County,emphasizing that the traditional “jobs-housing balance” metric is no longer a sufficient way to measureeconomic stability; rather, the region’s expanding transportation infrastructure must be added into theanalysis. The report also addressed the need for additional investment in workforce housing, defined ashousing affordable to workers earning between 50% and 120% of Area Median Income (AMI). Very fewpublic subsidies and incentives exist to construct housing at these affordability levels, and market rentsin most neighborhoods across the County are above these thresholds.The introduction of transit into the jobs-housing equation provides the opportunity to develop housing inless expensive markets and capitalize on the transit infrastructure that connects these markets to job andactivity centers. In addition to providing recommendations that incentivize the development of additionalworkforce housing in close proximity to transit, the 2012 Report revealed that the developable footprintaround transit can be significantly expanded by establishing multimodal connections at transit centers.This concept, described as “transit corridor development,” is a critical component to a long-term growthstrategy that will provide more sustainable housing opportunities, minimizing the potential negativeimpacts typically associated with increased development densities.
The Need for Workforce Housing
Throughout Los Angeles County, residents continue to face extremely high costs for housing. In 2012, 51.3%of owners and 59.8% of renters in the County were considered “housing cost burdened” by the U.S.Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), spending more than 30% of their income onhousing (U.S. Census Bureau, 2012). While Los Angeles County faces excess demand for housing acrossall affordability levels, there is a particular need for investment in workforce housing units. In 2013, theLos Angeles County AMI is $82,400 for a family of four—this means that workforce housing units areaffordable to families earning between $41,400 and $98,880 (HUD, 2013). These members of the workforceare not receiving public subsidies or housing vouchers; rather they are school teachers, engineering technicians, and web developers who find themselves cost-burdened by market-rate housing in many parts of the County.As the 2012 Report noted, the growing public transit assets in theCounty create new opportunities to address the shortage ofworkforce housing in Los Angeles County. By pursuingworkforce housing development in less expensive areas that areconnected to job centers via transit, the burden on theseworking residents can be substantially reduced. As such,policymakers must engage with the development community tocreate appropriate incentives for the development of workforcehousing in connected, livable corridors around the County.The transit corridor concept introduced in the 2012 Report is anessential part of livable community development. Utilizingmobility hubs and walk-extenders, which serve to enhance theconnections outward from transit stations throughout thesystem, helps connect the transportation network tocommunities beyond the typical quarter-mile radius oftenassociated with Transit-Oriented Development (“TOD”).Multimodal connections are critical to ensuring that housing,employment centers, and other community assets are fully able to realize the benefits of transit throughout Los Angeles County.
Figure 1: From the 2012 Report: Illustrating the difference between traditional TOD and Transit Corridor Development 

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