Columbia County faces a significant need for affordable housing. Many households are rent burdened, spending over 50% of their income on housing. In most cities, affordable housing is developed in concentrated locations, segregated from higher income neighborhoods. Research by Dr. Raj Chetty and Nathaniel Hendren (2016) of the Economic Opportunity Project show that children from low-income families raised in economically integrated neighborhoods are more likely to escape poverty.
Economic segregation is particularly apparent in Hudson. In the census tract north of Warren Street, the child poverty rate is 39%. South of Warren Street, the child poverty rate is only 10%. Economic segregation is rapidly worsening in Hudson, as the difference in the child poverty rate of these two neighborhoods became three times greater from 2013 to 2016.
Galvan’s new affordable housing initiative addresses this concerning trend. This year, Galvan is creating 29 units of low to moderate income housing without any state or federal financial assistance. The initiative is financed by Galvan and a $2,500,000 construction loan from the Bank of Greene County.
Galvan operates 180 units of affordable housing, and provides programs offering funding and counseling to people struggling to stay in their home because of foreclosure, home repair costs and other challenges. Galvan owns a total of 86 buildings, of which 56 are occupied, 10 are currently in development, and 20 are stabilized uninhabitable vacant buildings in predevelopment. Galvan is addressing emergency housing needs through Galvan Motel, a 25 room motel designed to meet emergency housing needs and continues to seek opportunities to address needs across the housing spectrum.
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