Rethinking Revenue

Affordable Housing: Unlocking Game-Changing Potential

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The City of Atlanta, like many cities, faces a shortage of affordable housing. The mayor’s goal is to create or preserve 20,000 affordable housing units between 2022 and 2030. In 2022, Atlanta joined the Putting Assets to Work Incubator to implement an “Urban Wealth Fund.”

In this paper, we will use the City of Atlanta’s experience to illustrate the first step involved in Putting Assets to Work: Developing an “asset map.” An asset map is a tool for taking stock of the land and buildings owned by government entities of all kinds. Most local governments aren’t aware of the breadth of assets they own; and if they are aware of the assets, they likely don’t know the market value or potential of the assets. An asset map addresses both problems. We will discuss how an asset map comes together, what Atlanta learned from it, and where Atlanta is going next. We will suggest actions that local governments can take to better manage their land uses for positive revenue impacts, including examples of local governments that have already taken some of these steps.

  • Publication date: February 2023