The Chicago Housing Authority opened its three housing lists yesterday and is expecting a lot of people to sign up:
Agency officials expect more than 250,000 families to apply for spots on three waiting lists — one for public housing, one for housing vouchers and one for apartments in privately owned subsidized housing,
“We don’t have a set number of slots available. … We can’t predict how long people will be on the wait list,” said Katie Ludwig, a deputy chief housing officer at the CHA. “We are getting to the end of our (current) wait lists, and we thought it was a great opportunity for people who are in need of housing. We thought we’d open all three lists at the same time. It’s something we’ve never done.”…
Having their name on a list at the agency does not guarantee housing. It is simply one step closer to participating in the agency’s programs. Historically, the CHA has had wait lists that surpass 15,000 families for each of its programs, records show.
Residents can wait years to be called in for housing.
Still, the current move comes as the agency has been under fire for not doing enough to house the city’s poorest and most vulnerable populations. In July, a report from an independent think tank revealed that the agency had banked more than $355 million rather than use the money for housing. Local officials and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development have pressed the agency to serve more people.
Two things have not changed:
1. The CHA continues in not providing enough housing.
2. There is a lot of demand in Chicago for affordable housing.
Both of these issues date back decades. The CHA has been either slow or incompetent, or perhaps both. While new housing units may have been built for wealthier residents in trendy neighborhoods or along the lakefront, the city still does not have enough affordable or public housing. You might think these problems might be solved at some point given their long history and the basic need for decent housing but there has not even been much conversation about addressing these concerns.
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