The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Affordable Housing in Detroit—Where?!

May 1, 2023

The City of Detroit, like all major cities, is in dire need of affordable housing for its working class and poorer residents.

Gone are many of the stable, working class neighborhoods with homes. Huge swaths of Detroit are like a ghost town when you drive through. Rents are skyrocketing, so much so that ordinary families are finding themselves doubling and tripling up in their one and two bedroom apartments—if they can find something they can afford.

But while the average Detroiter today struggles with finding an affordable rental unit or home, the city of Detroit is flush with new condo and townhome developments all over areas like Midtown and downtown. If you have over half a million dollars to buy a one bedroom unit. Or 1.5 million dollars because you need a couple more bedrooms.

And all of these new buildings and developments are eligible for a substantial tax reduction for 15 years, because this housing is located within what is designated as “eligible distressed communities.”

How is it that people who have a million and a half dollars to spend on a condo are eligible for reduced taxes, while long-time Detroit residents who ARE distressed are ineligible for decent, affordable housing? Something is wrong with this picture!