Architecture for Humanity - SF
Saturday, July 10, 2004
and the NEWS on HOMELESSNESS goes on.....

July 7 - July 13 2004 € Vol. 38, No. 41

by chance martin

The war at home

FOURTEEN MILLION AMERICAN households spend more than half their income onhousing. Five million households are precariously housed, meaning they lack employment stability or income to pay for both their housing and other basic necessities such as food and clothing, do not have access to affordable housing near work, or have experienced housing discrimination.

As many as 3.5 million Americans, more than 1 million of whom are children,lack housing altogether.

The Section 8 program of the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development is the largest source of housing subsidies for Americans living in poverty. And last year, the Bush administration proposed a 2004 budget that would have forced more than 100,000 extremely low-income families out of their homes by cutting funding for their Section 8 vouchers. When Congress voted that plan down, the administration undertook a stealth plan to drain funding from Section 8 by revising housing regulations.

The Bush administration's true agenda is now coming to light as states and housing authorities begin to receive their 2004 funding, finding allocations shockingly short. If these restrictive rules are not repealed, thousands of households will lose their vouchers and face the very real possibility of homelessness. In San Francisco these federal policies place 871 households at immediate risk of losing their subsidies, with 2,071 more in jeopardy by 2009.

Cynically, the Bush administration has declared a goal of ending "chronic" homelessness ­ while actively opposing the creation of a national housing trust fund that could help close America's housing gap in a decade.

And now the feds propose cutting Section 8 funding by another $1.6 billion, putting 250,000 American households at risk of homelessness.

Widespread homelessness during the Great Depression was, in large measure, solved through housing and works programs created by popular mobilization, but for the past 25 years, national agenda has been set by three Republican administrations and one New Democrat. And the last quarter-century of American housing policy reveals one constant: an ongoing failure to reconcile federal cuts to low-income housing with a concurrent rise in

Sadly, it appears the Bush administration is now ready to blame the "liberals," the "doubters," the well-meaning providers, and the people on the front lines for "accommodating" homelessness. Such charges conveniently ignore the 64 percent cut to HUD's housing budget since 1978, as well as the annual loss of some 90,000 affordable housing units, instead fixing the blame for a seemingly intractable homelessness crisis on the very people struggling to address the problem.

The Bush administration should support its admirable call to "abolish" homelessness in America by putting its money where its mouth is: it should restore full funding for HUD's Section 8 program and support the National Affordable Housing Trust Fund Act.

Together we can move toward ending homelessness in America.

Chance Martin is the editor of Street Sheet.
(linked version)
chance martin
A Publication of the Coalition on Homelessness, San Francisco
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Chron staff writer Kevin Fagan's take | New homeless plan could be neutralized Proposed cuts in HUD housing subsidies criticized

New Projections Show Potential Effects in Each Community
| Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

Rethinking Public Housing

This is very similar to the kiosk project I have proposed, essentially an alternative to the hand out donation interaction, citizens are encouraged to contribute change to old parking meters which in turn translate to food vouchers for the homeless. A nice idea.

2 articles on Spokane Mayor who ordered homeless encampment to disband.
Chron1 | Chron2

DESIGN merging homelessness & architecture....

Catch an interview with Cameron Sinclair and the BBC

Helmut Jahn's Chicago homeless shelter | pic
Global Peace Containers International
Bring design to public housing projects in Norwalk

Michael Pyatok goes to ASU to head up new think tank on affordable housing.

A good article about Tent City 4 in the Seattle Times
NYC warehouse an environmentalist conversion
KU Studio 804 Modular 1 House Wins International Wood Design Award
Hunters Point Park Survives
Tuesday, July 06, 2004

SF's 10 Year Plan to End Chronic Homelessness has been unveiled, in all its prodigal glory, with Washington's 'homeless abolitionist' grand wizard Mangano himself, who flew over to annoint our dear sophisticated city with the fed's pride and slick tongued stamp of approval. While Alioto has worked hard and is sincere and compassionate about the issue, one cannot refuse the bigger picture Mangano has done such a good job to distract our local municipalities from calling foul.

Ironically this big plan unfolds as our local heroes in the trenches at the 'Coalition on Homelesness' face a sad round of layoffs.

Beyondchron's take on the 10 Year Plan
the Roundabout filtration of dollars for services
NYC Homeless Programs VS. SF? | Beyonchron says wrong again
Reagan & Homelessness
SFWeekly | Street Shuffle
Less Cash, More Care?
Hidden benefit of Care Not Cash -- homeless rolls drop
Our new Anti-loitering law
Federal official touts 10-year plan to reduce homeless in Nevada
Contra Costa County approves 10 year plan
Alameda set to put people on the street
Third Worldly Matthew Spitzer brings lessons from China and Sierra Leone into a Tenderloin medical clinic
Philly Style help for Homeless


MOBilSTAtion (MOBSTA) wins International Award for Homeless Proposal | Kevin Hayes Architects

Thinking about the box | The shipping news | Are Mobile Homes the future of affordable housing? | Is Jim Reid's ShelterOne really a solution for SF Homeless?

Teddy Cruz wins an award

A-matter profiles this project for drug addicts in Utrecht.
New Women's Shelter
A Palo Alto Homeless Shelter
Homeless Shelter in Austin
A Mobile Assist Vehicle Student Project Charette
Laguna Honda Design and Compassion
For pioneering affordable-housing advocate Rosanne Haggerty, good design is hardly an extravagance. In fact, it pays for itself.

High Concept Design in Shelter
New Futuristic Prefab Apartments for Microliving
The Anti-Burb (arcosanti) | Recycling Arcosanti
Berkeley 2004 Essay Winners
Competition Public Space 2004
Walter Hood’s Profile
HomeAid Builders for Shelters

Morphosis' Green Tower

In less than two years, the deep hole at the corner of 7th and Mission Streets in San Francisco will be the site of greenest federal building in the United States. The 605,000 sq. ft., 18-story San Francisco Federal Building will set precedents with its focus on community space and its intelligent use of natural light and heat, as well as such eco-friendly products as wood sustainably harvested from local forests and carpets containing recycled content. The tower will even be built with “green” cement.

“There isn’t anything quite like it,” said Tim Christ, Project Manager at the design architect firm Morphosis. The “green” cement, Christ explains, contains a 50% mix of granulated blast furnace slag — a steelmaking by-product that usually winds up in a landfill. In addition to making the new cement stronger, the mix cuts the need for cement in half. “The manufacture of Portland cement worldwide contributes approximately 8% of total greenhouse gas emissions,” Christ notes. A ton of Portland cement produces a ton of CO2.

The new building will be heated and cooled with natural systems, eliminating the waste and expense of artificial light and heat. Most workstations will have direct access to sunlight, cutting the use of energy for lighting by 26%. Computer-operated windows and a sophisticated automatic vent system will provide cooling to 70% of the building, reducing annual air-conditioning costs by 86%. The improved ventilation is expected to drastically reduce the “sick building syndrome” that plagues traditional office buildings. Breaking down traditional office hierarchies, corner offices will be eliminated to provide city views for 90% of the workers. Subsidized public transportation for employees will reduce traffic on busy city streets. In fact, despite its 1,800 employees, the tower’s garage will offer only 47 parking spaces. In an effort to reach out to the community, the new building will include a fitness center, conference center, daycare center, sky gardens, and a large open-air cafeteria — all open to the public.

This project promises to draw San Francisco into the growing sustainable buildings movement that has already taken root in Europe. San Francisco architect Craig Henritzy calls it “a major coup for the green movement in office buildings.” — Jennifer Liss

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