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Inclusionary zoning policies in Germany and Sweden: the importance of underlying institutions
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Affordable housing shortage and concerns about social and income segregation have become a focal point of housing policy debate in many Western countries and inclusionary zoning policies (IZ) have become widespread. IZ is a term that summarizes municipal ambitions to spur the inclusion of affordable housing in otherwise market-rate projects through planning restrictions. This article investigates IZ policy objectives and agent incentives of policies applied by the German city of Stuttgart and a Swedish pilot project in the city of Gothenburg.

 

Although IZ policies in the two countries generally have very similar objectives and incentive structures, underlying slow-moving institutions decide fundamental traits of the fast-moving institution of IZ. In the Swedish case, allocation methods of low-rent apartments under the unitary housing system might prevent targeted polices such as IZ from functioning as intended. In the German case, IZ is integrated into the existing social and affordable housing system. Therefore its social objectives are not contested, although the limitation of private property rights and the incentive structures of developers are bound to be discussed.

 

Irrespective of the housing system, the extent of public land ownership might also be a decisive factor in whether to implement IZ policies or not. In Stuttgart, where public land ownership is limited, IZ policies might be an efficient way to produce affordable housing, as alternatives, including finding inexpensive land for public production, are limited. As Gothenburg municipality owns most of the land available for housing development, has a planning monopoly and public housing companies with good financial standing, it might find other, quicker and possibly less costly, ways to develop affordable housing than applying IZ, especially if it is implemented mainly through public investors.

Keywords [en]
affordable housing, inclusionary zoning, housing policy, municipal land, housing systems
National Category
Social Sciences
Research subject
Real Estate and Construction Management
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-213705OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-213705DiVA, id: diva2:1138385
Funder
SBUF - Sveriges Byggindustriers Utvecklingsfond, 13228
Note

QC 20170905

Available from: 2017-09-05 Created: 2017-09-05 Last updated: 2017-09-05Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Institutional prerequisites for affordable housing development: A comparative study of Germany and Sweden
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Institutional prerequisites for affordable housing development: A comparative study of Germany and Sweden
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis was written against the background of intense public debate on increasing housing shortages and housing policy reform in Germany and Sweden. Potential reforms to increase housing development volumes, especially in the affordable segment, are analysed using theories of institutional change with focus on urban planning, building law and housing policy. The instruments analysed are divided into measures intended to increase housing supply elasticity and targeted affordable housing measures.

 

Three measures intended to increase housing supply elasticity that could be transferable to Sweden are identified: 1) Development planning could be reformed through facilitated procedures, the introduction of private initiative in planning and new incentives of planning authorities. 2) The planning and building legislation could be reformed to facilitate building approvals in relation to serial housing construction, which in turn could increase the number of affordable homes being built. 3) City housing policy could promote housing development through more intense use of the policy instruments of organisation, urban planning, municipal land and subsidies, with city organisation and political attention to housing markets being identified as crucial.

 

However, effectively targeted affordable housing policies are difficult to implement under the current Swedish housing policy regime. In the short term, Swedish housing policy should therefore concentrate on housing supply elasticity-enhancing measures. However, considering the increasing pressure on the affordable housing supply and future expected demographic changes, public discussion of potential future solutions would be valuable. A first step would be to compile housing statistics such that the affordable housing shortage and the opportunities to design effective measures to counter it could be better understood.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2017. p. 70
Series
TRITA-FOB-DT-2017:6
Keywords
affordable housing, housing policy, urban planning, building law, institutional change
National Category
Social Sciences
Research subject
Real Estate and Construction Management
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-213672 (URN)978-91-85783-80-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
2017-10-26, E3, Osquars Backe 14, Stockholm, 09:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
SBUF - Sveriges Byggindustriers Utvecklingsfond, 13228
Note

QC 20170905

Available from: 2017-09-05 Created: 2017-09-04 Last updated: 2017-09-05Bibliographically approved

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