City plans for more affordable housing along Main Street corridor

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MT Bank’s big announcement of a Tech Hub set to be  located at the Seneca One Building could lead to some affordable housing concerns.

The expansion is said to bring at least 1,000 new jobs to the downtown area and with that are some concerns for where there’s folks are going to live. 

One of the concerns, is that the new development could cause existing residents to be priced out of their homes. But, Mayor Byron Brown  says he’s not going to let that happen.

Brown addressed this issue late last week. He told News 4 that plans for new affordable housing is in the works. 

“Our goal is to make this a city of opportunity for all people in every section of the City of Buffalo,” he said. “We have a plan to bring new housing online, affordable housing, workforce housing, market rate housing in the City of Buffalo. One significant opportunity, that we have, is the Main Street rail corridor, which the city calls the Knowledge Corridor and that’s Main Street from the south campus all the way to the waterfront.”

Local researchers say this plan could be a good thing and the lack of affordable housing in our region is a problem that will get worse and worse, if it’s not addressed.

“The majority of renters in the city of Buffalo can not afford their housing cost. That’s 54 percent of them. And that means they’re spending more than 30 percent of their income on rent and utilities,” said Sarah Wooton Community Researcher for the Partnership for the Public Good. “And, a big chunk of renters in Buffalo spend more than half of their income on rent.”

Wooton also says, it’s not just renters who are feeling the pinch, but homeowners as well. Roughly more than a quarter of homeowners can’t afford their housing costs.

The mayor says he plans to roll out specifics of this plan in the near future.

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