NEW YORK — Mayoral candidate Andrew Yang is set Wednesday to unveil a sweeping affordable housing plan to invest $4 billion per year toward the goal of producing 250,000 units in eight years.
What You Need To Know
- Democratic candidate for mayor to commit to 250,000 affordable units in eight years
- Yang to propose eliminating City Council member deference and mandatory parking minimums
- He’s set to cite readiness to confront “bureaucratic gauntlet"
An advance copy of his speech obtained by NY1 shows the Democrat will tout his blueprint as the most expansive since the era of Mayor Ed Koch.
“In many ways, the task ahead is much tougher than what Mayor Koch faced,” Yang is expected to say, according to his prepared remarks. “As the first mayor after the fiscal crisis of the mid-70s, Ed Koch benefited from lower land prices and a giant store of city-owned properties.”
The policy proposal is one of Yang’s most substantial to date. The frontrunner in the Democratic primary is best known for his plan to spend $1 billion per year toward a basic income of $2,000 annually for New Yorkers living below the poverty line. And while his platform tackles a broad range of issues, particularly relating to reopening the city, some pitches have been lacking in detail.
On Wednesday, the former presidential candidate is set to propose such steps to accelerate and enable the creation of affordable housing including:
- Eliminating City Council member deference
- Rolling back mandatory parking minimums
- Legalizing single-room occupancy buildings and accessory dwelling units, also called SROs and ADUs
- Overhauling the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure, or ULURP, to speed up approvals of 100% affordable developments
“A rezoning of a neighborhood to build denser, new types of housing runs into a bureaucratic gauntlet that favors the loudest voices in a room, not necessarily the most sensible,” Yang is set to say. "Years of work would often end with inertia.”
Michelle Kuppersmith of Open New York, a group that advocates for more housing and lower rents, told NY1 she’s encouraged by the scope of Yang’s proposal.
She added, “Andrew Yang’s support for ending parking minimums requires significant courage. People in this city love their cars and it’s definitely a tough call to make for affordability and it’s a fairly bold stance for a candidate to come out and say we need housing for people rather than cars.”
Yang has been atop the most recent public opinion surveys of the race. A recent NY1/Ipsos poll had him with 22% support among voters, ahead of all of his Democratic rivals.