Tag: housing crunch
Harrisonburg City Council members met in person for the first time since 2020 and revisited key issues from that time: the new high school and a housing crunch.
Charly Ngeleka spent his Friday afternoon on a scaffold, lifting solar panels up to the installation team on the roof. He and another half-dozen volunteers were working on a partially-finished duplex in Harrisonburg, one being built by the Central Valley Habitat for Humanity. When completed, it’ll become Ngeleka’s home.
The city of Harrisonburg’s decades-long trend of rapid growth is no more. According to 2020 estimates published by the Weldon Cooper Center, the city had a population of 54,049 on July 1. While that’s up slightly from last year’s estimate, it’s lower than the 2016 estimate, capping a five-year period in which the city’s population essentially remained flat.
Hiring a city housing coordinator, attracting higher paying employers, providing more incentives to developers and establishing a housing trust fund were among the 17 recommendations consultants suggested Tuesday to the Harrisonburg City Council.
After the Harrisonburg City Council re-elected them to their positions for another two years on Monday, Mayor Deanna Reed and Vice-mayor Sal Romero outlined in interviews with The Citizen their shared priorities for the coming months, including recovering economically from the pandemic, encouraging affordable housing and building the second high school.
Yes, we have lots of questions about how Harrisonburg will emerge on the other side of this pandemic. But there’s a lot more to ponder in the new year as well.