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Set of Tools for Strategic Planning to Ensure Affordable Housing in Czech Residencies

Abstract: Housing is a basic human right. It has a profound impact on the quality of life, wellbeing, health, environment, mobility and society as a whole. Well-planned housing solutions are a prerequisite for cities and other human settlements to become socially, ecologically and economically sustainable and culturally adequate. Lack of housing that inhabitants can afford leads to heavy problems such as unhealthy environment, poverty and homelessness, social crises, and an overall non-competitiveness. Therefore, an affordable housing have become a particularly important policy objective over last decades. This article discusses what the role of strategic planning is when municipalities strive for improved housing affordability. It considers the connections between affordable housing, strategic planning, and all the aspects of physical planning, environmental sustainability, economic feasibility, and social cohesion. It states a few examples of actions and tools which can be set up via strategic plans, and which municipalities might use to provide more affordable housing for their inhabitants. Those include methodological tools (e.g. audit of housing possibilities or a concep of housing development), regulative tools (e.g. in urban plans), restrictive tools (e.g. taxes on non-used empty houses or foreign investments) as well as proactive tools (e.g. creating funds for housing development or supporting good image of a locality). The listed actions and tools are divided into six categories: a) political, legislative, and administrative, b) social, c) economic, d) rooted in infrastructure and environment, e) dealing with planning system and processes, and f) based on reputation, marketing, and branding. Also, they point on the whole process of strategic planning. The article warns that when the listed criteria are applied individually, none of them is able to solve the situation of unaffordable housing. It stresses the necessity to combine the wide set of actions and tools which are mutually interconnected and create synergies. However, this requires stronger involvement of local actors, a more effective cross-sectoral cooperation, and coordination between national and local authorities.

DOBRUCKÁ, Lucia, KOHOUT, Michal, ŠTĚPÁNEK, Petr, TICHÝ, David (2020). Spektrum nástrojov na zabezpečenie dostupného bývania v českých sídlach. In: Jiří Kugl, ed. Člověk, stavba a územní plánování 13. ČVUT v Praze, Fakulta stavební pp. 186-201. ISBN 978-80-01-06762-8. ISSN 2336-7695.