Real estate professionals, developers, community leaders and elected officials gathered for the Affordable Housing Roundtable, in East New York last week. The event was held at East New York’s premiere restaurant, Fusion East. The event was powered by EquityCoin, the first digital token backed by affordable housing. The event was filmed by PBS, and will be aired on their NOVA television series in the coming months.
The solution-driven discussion, which will continue over the coming months, brought together thought-leaders from all aspects of the affordable housing pipeline in order to explore holistic solutions to the growing housing crisis. Panelists included Assemblywoman Nikki Lucas, Albert Scott (Chairman at the East New York Homeowners’ Assoc.), Boris Santos (Treasurer at ENY Community Land Trust), Vernon J. (Founder & CEO at EquityCoin), Rita Zimmer (Executive Director at HousingPlus), and Teghvir Sethi (Principal at Spatial Equity Co.).
On any given night, there are over 2,000 New Yorkers living on the streets, and according to the attendees and panelists, something must be done.
Some ideas that resonated throughout the event were:
- Increasing access to housing vouchers for families who work
- Creating a better balance between public policy and private funding
- Advocating for more ethical development tactics that are meant to serve the community instead of take away from it
- How to use new tech solutions like Blockchain to create more efficiencies in the affordable housing supply chain
- With large developments that are subsidized by the government, there should be some form of community equity ownership within the capital stack
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