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Since the 2008 housing recession, American cities have been undergoing a reversal period where people who once fled the city center are now drawn to its alluring qualities. The period of “white flight” that decentralized our urban cores for a generation of boomers to find a house with a white picket fence to start a family, has been replaced by the millennial who wants a one bedroom $1400 studio apartment, no kids, and works in a shared spaced with other digital share croppers. For the first time, our suburbs have shown higher poverty rates than our cities (Florida 2019). Malls and large commercial properties have been abandoned due to online competition by major coporations including: Amazon, Alibaba, and JD.com (Gunter 2017). Urban decay has started to spread into the suburbs while cities have experienced a rather positive period of revitalization (Dunham-Jones 2008). The result has been a flourishing market for real estate developers to focus on housing construction for a high-cost demand in our major cities. With little regulations against the units being produced and their resale value, rental rates have skyrocketed and only the people with money have seen a great period of prosperity. In lieu of these investments, the poorer areas of our cities have experienced gentrification, and the urban revitalization that was employed to try social inequity, has instead driven long-term residents out of their communities by higher prices. Culture, artistry, and h istory that made these communities attractive are being lost behind developer greed and political complicity. Atlanta is among the most vulnerable of any rapidly growing metropolitan region because of its developer friendly regulations that encourage rapid renewal, and its construction of large, city-wide infrastructural projects like the Beltline. Consequently, in Atlanta, there is a growing mismatch between housing costs, wages, and income. While Atlanta’s economy has grown over the last decade, wages have not kept pace with rising rents. Between 2000 and 2017, Atlanta’s median rent increased by over 70%, but the median income only increased by 48% (One Atlanta, 2019). More importantly, over 27% of households still earned less than $25,000 annually showing a growing gap between what people can afford versus what people are making. With luxury housing being the main focus of developers, the percentage of income dedicated to housing costs greatly increased for Atlantans and in 2016, nearly half were considered housing-cost burdened. The federal government suggests that households should spend no more than 30% of their income on housing and utilities to not be considered burdened. The gini coefficient, which measures income inequality, scores a 0 to those cities who have achieved absolute equality and a 1 to cities that have complete inequality. It should come as no surprise that Atlanta has been called the "inequality capital" having maintained a Gini coefficient of 0.57 for several years (Lu 2019). This year, Atlanta ranks last amongst cities with populations greater than 250,000. Equally important, as the housing costs have increased and the credit constraints have risen in Atlanta, the homeownership rates for communities of color and low-income residents have declined. Important to note, homeownership is one of the primary sources of inherited wealth between generations which allows lower income individuals to take steps to get out of extreme poverty. Between 2010 and 2016, there was a 15% decline in homeownership rates for all households in Atlanta earning less than $100,000 (One Atlanta, 2019). The South of the City has a larger population of people of color and a higher percentage of people paying more than 30% of their income on housing costs than other areas in Atlanta. More than 70% of renting households in the south and west sides of Atlanta were paying more than 30% of their income towards rent, rather in the north, less than 10% of renting households were rent burdened. In 2015, 22% of renting households in Fulton County received eviction notices, a high percentage of which were levied against Atlanta’s south and westside neighborhoods (Pendered 2017). Above all else, the quality of life between the North and South areas of Atlanta has had an increasing disparity attributed to the flow of money creating better schools, more greenspaces, additional jobs, and improved living standards for those that can afford it. For those that cannot afford it, like those living in Southside Atlanta, the people live on average 13 years shorter than those who live in the Northside (One Atlanta, 2019). If the job of architects, planners, and city employees is to ensure the life safety and well-being of the constituents we serve in providing a set of standards, we are doing a poor job of it. However, the purpose of this paper is not show what a bang-up job we are doing as professionals in solving our affordable housing crisis. The purpose of this paper is to find creative solutions to the affordable housing crisis by starting with those who are the most in need; those who are homeless. What is the problem? The problem is that we cannot produce enough affordable units to satisfy the general population let alone provide units that will fulfill the needs of our homeless individuals. It is not that we do not have the money to provide affordable housing. It is a matter of effective distribution of funds, of having strong public and private sector relationships, and of having a sense of urgency. The pace at which our cities are growing largely outweighs their current affordable housing inventory. The Gini coefficient is one quantitative measure we can employ to drive the need for change and track its progress. If used in conjunction with our qualitative findings through daily encounters and experience, we can stop the continued cycle of homelessness and social inequity that many people have come to accept with a highly developed city. This “big city” mentality has to change so that people are not turning a blind eye to their fellow neighbor and environment. Social progress comes with understanding that we are a reflection our city and at that level we are all equal. Once we can take pride in our city and its appearance, we can start to create change. What is the solution? There is no simple solution to the multitude of problems that comes with our cities. For every solution we create there will always be a complaint that we could have served a better purpose. However, what we can begin to identify is what are positive and what are negative solutions. The positive solutions are those that can be presented immediately and can happen at a small-scale. These incremental changes can be affordable housing, main street improvements, or a new community space. Positive projects preserve neighborhoods for their cultural and historical value. They maintain legacy homeowners and improve the quality of life through community-based design. The negative solutions are those that happen over the course of several years at the regional scale. These negative solutions are influenced by big spending campaigns that see gentrification and displacement as a necessary and unavoidable evil. Examples of these changes include the Beltline and the Gulch project, a form of top-down planning. This paper is not aimed at choosing sides to who is right and who is wrong. Rather, the objective is highlighting the need and encouraging the collaboration of three spheres of influence in creating a more attractive and affordable city. These influences include: the private, public, and non-profit sectors.