Cities across the US are facing an affordable housing crisis; Nationwide, one
in four families pay more than half their income on rent. Owning a home can
protect people from volatile rent and allow residents to gain equity over the
long-run. Unfortunately, affordable options to purchase new homes are few
and far between. Even Pittsburgh is seeing the effects of gentrification: despite having 30,000 vacant lots, a recent study concludes that our city lacks over 21,000 affordable units.
As more wealth moves into our city, we need to make sure those who call Pittsburgh home
have affordable options to stay and thrive here.
Module's incremental houses are designed to grow as your financial means do or as your family grows. With our modular design and patent-pending structural system it’s easy to convert a one bedroom starter unit into a three bedroom house over time. Our building technology, combined with the right
financing options, can create new ways to build affordable housing in
Pittsburgh. How does it
work? Our expandable building technology enables specific parts of a home’s exterior to be removed in order to connect pre-fabricated additions in place - almost like giant LEGO blocks. Module houses can grow vertically or in the rear of the structure.
We have letters of support from Pittsburgh's first non-profit community land trust
as well as the Urban Redevelopment
Authority (URA). Together, we plan to build 1-3 starter units as part of an “incremental housing pilot program” on vacant lots in the city.
The pilot will test new, alternative
construction methods and design options to keep Pittsburgh affordable. The URA will assist
with site assembly and participate in construction financing,
while the non-profit community development corporation (Lawrenceville Community Land Trust) will manage the development process and identify
financing options for residents. Building these pilot homes
will allow our partners to test different-sized units and financing
plans using Module’s technology. Based on these findings, other nonprofit community development corporations can build incremental housing in their neighborhoods. To date, we've met with Larimer Consensus Group, Operation Better Block, the Hilltop Alliance, and Action Housing. After demonstrating our proof of concept through the pilot program with the Lawrenceville Community Land Trust, we see these organizations as potential partners in the future. With new technology, public support,
and a community-based nonprofit we can bring
innovation to the local housing market.