Affordable Housing - Big Picture Project

Maintaining an adequate supply of affordable housing is essential if we are to retain a mix of residents along the Central Corridor. 

What's the Issue?

Gentrification and involuntary displacement typically occur when light rail is built in a low income community.  Property values increase, rents and taxes go up, and low income populations, and those on a fixed income, including seniors, are priced out of the market. 

This involuntary displacement is a complex issue to address.  Improving a neighborhood is generally considered a good thing, especially when the area is very run down, with dilapidated and foreclosed properties.  But if new investments result in a reduction in the supply of affordable housing, the very people who had hoped to enjoy the benefits of the new light rail line may be forced to move away. 


What is happening now with Affordable Housing in Central Corridor?

Central Corridor Unified Affordable Housing Plan — Big Picture Project

Twin Cities LISC  (Local Initiatives Support Corporation), City of Minneapolis, and City of Saint Paul

The focus of The Big Picture Project is creating a unified housing for the Central Corridor and developing recommendations about preserving and building affordable housing in the area. For more information about the Big Picture Project. 


A set of draft recommendations circulated at the Big Picture Project November 15 Community Forum. Click here to view Draft Recommendations

DCC Involvement

HECUA interns Erin Scot and Alysa Friedrich conducted listening sessions throughout Central Corridor to provide additional community engagement to the project. 

The DCC also held two Sub-area Roundtable Discussions focused on gathering neighborhood input on the affordable housing needs and beginning to identify opportunity sites.

To view a report on DCC community engagement for the Big Picture Project visit:

DCC Research on Affordable Housing

Report: Sustaining Affordable Housing in the Central Corridor: The Neighborhood Connection


In 2010, a graduate student prepared a report on existing affordable housing and community perceptions and attitudes about new affordable housing and where it should be located.  He gathered information from a variety of sources, including the DCC ‘s member organizations, but accurate data proved hard to come by, and many of our members had not held community discussions on the topic.  A DCC committee is now in the process of determining if there is a role for the DCC in helping to initiate and facilitate these community conversations, with the possibility of recommending measures to better address the increasing need for affordable housing that is anticipated in the coming years.