In Texas, there are three primary elements used to identify “high-opportunity areas” for building affordable housing: high income, low levels of poverty, and high-quality schools. The idea is to counteract the “harm” of years of building affordable housing in areas of concentrated poverty by moving low-income families into high opportunity areas. The goal is to create new, diverse communities where relocated families and their children have an opportunity to thrive.
Gulf Coast Arms Apartments is the first Section 8 Reconstruction Project certified at the LEED Platinum level in the U.S. Its 350 units, located in north Houston, include many features rarely seen in affordable properties.
Other developers are also getting into the mixed-income housing market. For example, Lee Zieben of the Zieben Group is building a four-story, 350-unit workforce apartment complex called Residences at Hardy Yards on a 45-acre former railyard site just north of downtown Houston.