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Federal Reserve Bank Study Underscores Need for Housing and Transportation for Low- and Moderate-income Households

The Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas has released findings from their biannual Community Outlook Survey. The report, Housing and Transit Concerns Complicate Improved Job Picture for Communities in the Eleventh District, describes several dimension of improving economic conditions for low- and moderate-income (LMI) households. Unfortunately, the positive movement in the availability of jobs is encountering headwinds from a shortage of affordable housing and lack of transportation.

We are all encouraged by the improving employment picture for LMI households. Locally, low-skill and low-wage workers are contending with a tightening rental market and a dearth of transportation options–especially outside of the central city.

Twenty-nine percent of the homeless in Tarrant County are children: they are not in the job market. Without affordable child care and reliable transportation, neither are their parents.

For non-disabled adults (maybe 36% of the Tarrant County homeless population), employment is critical to their ability to escape homelessness and the attendant ill-effects on their physical health and family finances. In an expansive City where 35% of households do not have enough income to afford Fair Market Rent on a 2-bedroom apartment, our economic vitality is surely caught up in our ability to provide jobs along with transportation and affordable housing.

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