Juhn-Luke Browne, Margo Parker, Langston Stephens, Marqus Whitman
Faculty Sponsor: Dr. Joseph Ewoodzie
As property values in West Charlotte rise, residents who cannot afford to live there are slowly being pushed out. While policy makers deliberate over the best top-down response, both nonprofits and private firms are addressing displacement on the ground. Some organizations, like QC Family Tree, aim to alleviate other financial burdens –such as food and childcare– so that residents can focus on housing costs. Others, like the West Side Community Land Trust (CLT), focus on stabilizing taxable property value, to keep people who own their homes from being priced out anyway. The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Housing Partnership (CMHP) helps people who have been displaced to make a down payment and achieve home equity.
Each of these nonprofits intervene at a different stage in the displacement process, and as such, their methods and ideologies vary widely. Despite their different approaches, we’ve seen activists and philanthropists alike confront disparate issues, both inside and outside of organizations to which they are connected. Here, we explore what obstacles affordable housing advocates face in West Charlotte, and how they try to overcome them. We determined that resource scarcity, burnout, and competition constitute the biggest obstacles to affordable housing on Charlotte’s West Side.