- Alliance for Community Transit – Los Angeles (ACT-LA) is a 36-member community coalition based in the City of LA, with partners across LA County.
- Founded in 2011, ACT-LA brings together tenants’ rights and affordable housing advocates, transit equity advocates, and community development organizations striving to create a more sustainable and equitable region.
- Our organizations together have advanced policy solutions that are pro-density, pro-community, and pro-affordable housing, including Measure JJJ in City of Los Angeles.
Background: Housing costs around transit are on the rise, displacing low-income people of color who account for the overwhelming majority of public transit ridership.
- The impact of the housing crisis on the poor is staggering. Low-income renters in LA County would need to spend an impossible 121 percent of their income to afford a typical rental in the region, even at the bottom third of the market.
- 4 in 5 frequent Metro riders are low-income people of color. Metro’s ridership has fallen by 15 percent over five years. We must take into account the impact gentrification and displacement of core riders to less resourced exurbs has on our transit ridership goals.
- Current investment in affordable housing production is severely lacking. Los Angeles County needs 551,807 more affordable rental homes to meet the needs of its lowest-income renters.
- Affordable housing near transit benefits Metro and the region. For example, one study found that lower income households drive 50 percent fewer miles when living within a quarter-mile of frequent transit. In contrast, higher income households drive more than twice as many miles as ELI households living within a quarter-mile of frequent transit.
Our Voices: Communities of color are closest to the problem and closest to the solutions.
- ACT-LA organized our first TOC Town Hall in May 2018 to identify priorities for a multi-pronged policy intervention at Metro to promote equitable development near transit. Priorities identified include: increasing funding for affordable housing for households earning below 30% of AMI, helping those jurisdictions receiving new transit stations adopt anti-displacement policies, and ensuring racial and economic equity are central to development and workforce decisions.
- And in June 2018, Metro’s Transit Oriented Communities Policy (TOC Policy) was unanimously approved by the Board after several months of input from residents, transit riders, housing advocates, and a Metro Policy Advisory Committee.
Next Steps: Implementation of Metro’s newly adopted TOC Policy.
- Support efforts to identify dedicated sources of funding for affordable housing, and the transit-oriented communities activities identified in the TOC Policy and forthcoming implementation plan.
- Support strong anti-displacement efforts in all jurisdictions receiving new transit infrastructure, to ensure community stability and no net loss of the affordable homes that transit riders depend on.
- Attend ACT-LA’s February 2019 TOC Town Hall (details forthcoming) to hear directly from impacted community members.