CEO Dre Thompson and Community Development Champion Nicole Johnson joined hundreds of community development professionals at this year's AZ Housing Forum.
With hundreds of people in attendance serving various roles of homeownership in the state, this year's 2023 AZ Housing Forum brought in so much excitement with conversations about thoughtful and affordable development for southern Arizona. Along with the Arizonans, Governor Katie Hobbs and Mayor Regina Romero, several out-of-state developers contributed to the main talking point of wanting to make connections with locals to get affordable and sustainable housing into southern Arizona. Keynote speaker Dr. Richard Antoine delivered a powerful speech on the significance of affordable housing having grown up as a foster child displaced in the housing community. Dr. Antoine went on to say how he relied on affordable housing to survive and succeed; ultimately becoming the first PhD tuba player in the United States.
Through the course of the two-day conference, the Tucson IDA engaged in interactive breakout sessions on topics of successful affordable housing stories, meeting necessary funds for development, and how to reach low-income residents. One of these success stories includes a multi-family affordable housing development that established a clinic within the facility, a blueprint strongly resonating with the community in light of the Choice Neighborhoods Implementation grant for the Tucson House.
As a result of outrageous interest rates and price of homes in the current housing market, many families were able to find housing through these developments. This dialogue comes at a pivotal time for the Tucson IDA following overwhelming success with their latest downpayment assistance program, PimaTucson LIGHTHOUSE. Implementing what was learned from the forum, the Tucson IDA is thrilled to continue affordable housing initiatives through its housing brand, PimaTucson Housing Innovation Hub.