By: Kimberely Brown
SPARTANBURG, SC (WSPA) – The City of Spartanburg is about to start their comprehensive planning and they’re looking at what’s happening right now in the city, what the future looks like and how they can plan for the future.
To plan properly, the city is looking for the communities input.
Affordable Housing is a big issue across the Upstate and stake holders in Spartanburg growth want to make sure its included as the city moves forward.
Spartanburg is growing and now’s the time to plan out the next 20 years of growth and development, and a lot of that includes making sure people have a place to live.
“It’s an exciting time in Spartanburg. There’s a lot of community momentum, there’s a great deal of community partnerships occurring,” Chris Story, Spartanburg city manager, said.
With so much happening, officials said it’s time to set new aspirations and the United Way of the Piedmont wants those new plans to include affordable housing.
“That can include new construction rehabilitation of current housing, but also looking at what kind of policies do we need related to housing,” Hannah Jarrett of the United Way of the Piedmont said.
While some find themselves paying weekly rent to have a roof over their heads, officials said they are spending nearly half of their income for shelter.
According to government reports, people should spend no more than 30 percent of their income on housing. The United Way wants people to know that there are programs available to help them move into an apartment or home ownership.
“To go from homelessness to paying maybe $800 a month for housing, that is a big jump. So, we need to make sure that we fill all those gaps in that housing continuum on that ladder,” Jarrett said.
Spartanburg City Council is allowing industries and organizations to come in and give their input on future developments.
“We’re excited about the progress that has been made in some of our neighborhoods and downtown, but it’s time to set the bar higher and that’s what we’ll try to define through this planning process,” Story said.
In addition to other organizations, city officials said they want to make sure there is a good mix of housing supply available for years to come.
While affordable housing is priority, city officials said millennials are a growing population in Spartanburg and they want to make sure they provide enough housing to cater to their taste, while maintaining traditional homes as well.
City officials will also hear from public safety, transportation department, public services and they’ll also hear from the public. Those dates and times will be posted in the near future.
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