ORLEANS – Mayor LaToya Cantrell today announced the start this week of
the City’s Mandatory Inclusionary Zoning Housing Policy, a
long-awaited, landmark change to the City’s zoning code that requires
developers to build affordable housing units in neighborhoods with some
of the highest housing costs in the city. With the policy taking
effect, New Orleans becomes one of the first cities in the Southeast to
implement a mandatory inclusionary housing program.
policy, which takes effect Thursday, July 1, mandates that developers
provide affordable housing units in new construction or rehabilitated
housing that contains more than 10 housing units in the CBD, French
Quarter, Marigny-Bywater, Treme, Mid-City, and Lower Garden District.
applies to all new multi-family rental developments, whether
stand-alone or mixed-use buildings. Beginning Thursday, these
developments will be required to set aside either 5% or 10% of rental
units for New Orleanians making 60% of the Area Median Income or
approximately $42,060 for a family of four. Based on 2021 HUD income
limits, the maximum rent for a two-bedroom unit would be $946.50 per
units must remain affordable for 99 years. In exchange for providing
affordable housing units, developments are entitled to development
bonuses, parking reductions, and financial incentives in the form of a
tax abatement. For those who would rather pay a one-time fee, there is
an option to do that as well. Developments located outside the
mandatory areas are eligible to take advantage of the incentives by
opting into the voluntary inclusionary housing provisions.
to the hard work of our City’s housing advocates and development
partners, the City Planning Commission, the City Council, and my Administration,
affordable housing for our residents will be required in some of our
highest opportunity neighborhoods when we implement the City’s first
ever Mandatory Inclusionary Zoning ordinance. Every resident deserves a
safe place to live and thrive and this program will provide housing
opportunities to those residents who are vital to our city’s economic
vitality. This program is for residents who are often excluded from
being able to live in the neighborhoods close to employment and
services," said Mayor
has shown that the resources that come with living in high-opportunity
neighborhoods help reduce the intergenerational persistence of poverty.
Interventions such as inclusionary zoning have proven to dramatically
change a family's ability to provide their children with upward
mobility by providing fairness and equitable access to neighborhoods
with more resources.
Councilmember for District B, one of my top priorities has been to
promote and maintain affordable housing opportunities that keep New
Orleanians in their neighborhoods. Throughout the city, access to
affordable housing is in a critical state. This comprehensive set of
policies is aimed at attacking the zoning and economic aspects of the
crisis with both incentives and mandates for new developments,"
said Jay H. Banks,
City Councilmember, District B.
the affordable housing crisis requires multiple interventions,
implementing inclusionary housing requirements is a major step in
bringing affordable housing to high opportunities areas that have
become off limits to low to moderate income households," said Marjorianna Willman, Director,
Office of Housing Policy and Community Development.
Orleans families have sustained many environmental and economic
disasters over the last 16 years increasing the need for affordable
housing and economic opportunity. The inclusionary housing policies
launched by Mayor Cantrell’s Office and the City Council are designed
to stimulate the creation of more affordable housing in core areas of
the city. Such a large initiative requires multi-agency collaboration
and Finance New Orleans is eager to play its role. Finance New Orleans
is providing value to this initiative by providing public financing
tools for developers including property tax abatements, housing bonds
and green infrastructure financing. The end goal is to increase the
ongoing availability of affordable and sustainable housing for New
Orleans families," said Damon
Burns, CEO, Finance New Orleans.
been working on the Smart Housing Mix since 2015 and it’s even more
necessary now because of how the pandemic has exacerbated our housing
crisis. It’s also exciting to finally see it implemented because it is
a vindication of the idea that if we want a city where the people who
make our culture can still afford to live, then everyone has to pitch
Hill, Executive Director, Louisiana Fair Housing Action Center.