BOISE, Idaho — The U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Wednesday launched its new initiative, 'Our Way Home,' aiming to increase the affordable housing supply in Idaho, Alaska, Oregon and Washington.
HUD Region X Administrator, Margaret Solle Salazar, joined Boise Mayor Lauren McLean and Idaho Housing Finance Association President, Gerald Hunter, at the Thomas Logan Apartments in Boise to launch the four-state initiative.
“We know that communities across the Northwest face a shortage of affordable homes – impacting renters and homeowners, families, seniors and persons with disabilities, veterans, students, and hard-working members of our communities,” Salazar said. “This demands our action – and it is a solvable crisis if we can work together as federal, state, and local partners.”
Our Way Home is led by HUD Secretary Marcia L. Fudge. The initiative focuses on connecting communities in the state with the tools and resources required to boost affordable housing supply.
HUD's affordable housing initiative is built from U.S. President Joe Biden's Housing Supply Action Plan, which was announced May 16. The Biden-Harris Administration's plan features legislative and administrative actions aimed at closing the housing supply crisis in America in five years.
The Housing Supply Action Plan hopes to create and maintain "hundreds of thousands of affordable housing units in the next three years." It also creates $5 billion home grants and funds to preserve housing on tribal lands.
“Easing the burden of housing costs for families is a top economic priority for this Administration. For too long and in too many communities, housing supply has not kept up with the growing demand," Fudge said. "It’s going to take government working at all levels to help close the housing supply gap. I am excited to launch Our Way Home, an initiative that will not only build on the momentum that’s already begun at the federal level, but will also put into focus the unique challenges and successes in communities when it comes to making sure we all find our way home.”
The announcement comes one day after McLean announced the city is joining House America alongside 75 other mayors across the United States.
House America is a federal partnership between HUD and the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH). The program supports a housing-first approach to combat homelessness.
750 affordable housing units will be available in Boise within five years, according to McLean's House America press conference Tuesday. However, Boise needs 21,450 affordable units over the next decade, according to the city's 2021 Housing Needs Analysis.
For more information on HUD's Our Way Home initiative, click here.
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