SALT LAKE CITY — Creating flexible and adaptable buildings gives people more housing choices and breaks the mold of one-size-fits-all development, according to John Anderson, founding member of national nonprofit Incremental Development Alliance.
“Small development is all about fourth-grade math and fifth-grade English,” Anderson told the crowd. “You’re not looking to change the scale of the whole city.”
Anderson spoke to a group of about 60 Salt Lake community members about small-scale development at a workshop Thursday.
The workshop is part of an educational series sponsored in part by the Salt Lake City Mayor’s Office, the Redevelopment Agency of Salt Lake City and Deseret First Credit Union to help educate people on incremental development.
He emphasized that people don’t have to be experts to become small-scale developers.
Brandon Dayton, a neighborhood advocate who helped organize the event, agreed.
“You don’t have to be a specialist to do this kind of work,” Dayton said.
Anyone interested in improving their neighborhood is the perfect fit for the job, he said.
Large development projects from outside developers can gentrify locations and push people out of their neighborhoods while raising prices, Dayton explained.
Whereas designing smaller one- to three-story buildings with no more than 20 residential units can help provide more housing options for people and address the affordable housing crisis.
“It doesn’t necessarily have to be large projects, it doesn’t have to be … a CVS or a Walmart, but it can be neighborhood scale, it can be owned by the neighborhood, it can be your neighbors, other members of the community that are kind of building wealth and benefiting from the work,” he said.
Increasing the number of local small developers can also help keep wealth in the community and increase the quality of life, Dayton added.
“When you invest in your own neighborhood, then it’s not just about the revenue that you get from that development, it’s also about the benefit you’re getting from making your neighborhood better,” he said.
Anderson said he hoped attendees of the workshop felt their vision was achievable.
“More than anything, I’m hoping that there was something in what I said that resonated with them about the scale of what is possible in a place that they care about,” he said. “Because what you really want to do as a small developer is find a place that you care about that needs you and that will make the effort sustainable.”
One big goal of the series is educating people and …read more
Source:: Deseret News – Business News