Last year a neighbor began flying a State of Jefferson flag on the side of his house that faces mine. I had no idea what it represented, so I looked it up. Short version: the 23 rural northern counties of California want to break away from the rest of the state so they can do … Continue reading The State of Jefferson
I was recently invited to give a talk at a housing conference down in Los Angeles. Once again my fellow speakers engaged in the usual arguments. Aging Baby Boomers asserted that we need to keep building more 1957 style suburban homes on the edge of the metroplex because that’s what people want and can afford, … Continue reading Beginnings, Middles, and Ends
I often host dinners with people from the neighborhood. Talking with them reminds me of how each generation has a different perspective and temperament. The Silent Generation, Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials each approach the challenges of life from unique angles and specific contexts. In the wake of the Great Depression and World War … Continue reading A Boomer, an Xer, and a Millennial Walk Into a Bar…
I recently attended a Request For Proposals session in Sonoma County. An RFP is basically a government agency asking the private sector to offer solutions for something the government doesn’t want to tackle on its own. In this case it had to do with the need for affordable housing in a highly constrained market. On … Continue reading Studies Are Easy. Implementation Is Hard.
Back when I was in high school (see bad 80’s hair above) I did the sort of work around the neighborhood that’s typical of teenagers. I mowed lawns, cleaned rain gutters, washed windows, and did a lot of general housekeeping for folks. I earned a bit of money and learned some important lessons that have … Continue reading The Lost World of the Solvent American
Everywhere I go it seems there’s some kind of housing crisis. In some places home values are dropping precipitously, people are unable to sell and move on, and formerly middle class homes are being abandoned or converted to poorly maintained rental properties. In other places home values and rents are obscenely high and ordinary people … Continue reading The Really Big Housing Picture