The initiative is a nationally funded program offering small and midsize cities in the U.S. an opportunity to work together to address pressing housing challenges and develop innovative, equitable solutions with a focus on racial and health equity through shared resources, research and technical assistance.
"Our involvement in the Housing Solutions Lab Peer Cities Network will help supply us with practical tips to implement what studies show is needed in our community," said Assistant Director of Planning Amanda Hernandez. "We want to bring our housing plans and studies to life within the local context with the help of the Peer Cities Network’s expertise."
San Marcos has seen booming population growth over the last decade. The World Population Review notes the city's population has increased by 51.56% since the 2010 census.
The city applied to join the 2022 Peer Cities Network to work with the growth it is seeing, and implement innovation housing solutions with an emphasis on achieving equity goals and understanding connections between housing, land use, and transportation.
Four employees from San Marcos' Planning & Development Services Department will represent the city in the network and participate in its ongoing forum for shared learning, support, and policy innovation.
The other cities selected to participate in the Peer Cities Network include:
- Cedar Rapids, IA
- Des Moines, IA
- Evanston, IL
- Missoula, MT
- Pasco, WA
- Pawtucket/Central Falls, RI
- Portland, ME
- Rochester, NY
"Our goal is to meet cities where they’re at and offer a range of supports that can be customized to meet their unique housing needs," said Executive Director of the Housing Solutions Lab Martha Galvez. "In joining the Peer Cities Network, San Marcos staff will gain access to a national community of experts, practitioners, and researchers to help them plan and launch strategies that leverage housing to expand opportunity."
The Housing Solutions Lab is led by an interdisciplinary team from the New York University Furman Center and is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Past members of the Peer Cities Network include Arlington, TX, Boulder, CO, and Cleveland, OH.
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