|Water Street holiday decorations|
Season's greetings from Sparkflight Studios' Water Street office, and best wishes to you and your loved ones for the upcoming New Year!
Sparkflight Studios is now certified for WBE and WOSB under the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), which means we have an advocate for access, capacity development, recognition, and community support to facilitate real-time business opportunities. WBENC also offers training that helps grow our capacity. WBENC is the largest certifier of women-owned businesses in the U.S. and a leading advocate for women business owners and entrepreneurs.
The United States Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved WBENC as a Third Party Certifier for Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB) certification as part of the SBA's WOSB Federal Contracting Program.
|Viewing south at our Wardelle Street Townhouses project as buildings near completion.|
Affordable housing is needed now more than ever due to the impact of COVID-19. Our Wardelle Street Townhouses project for the Southern Nevada Regional Housing Authority provides 57 affordable units to a market in need. Access to stable, decent, affordable, and accessible housing is essential for one's wellbeing.
|Late afternoon light illuminates the west facade of Building 1.|
|Landscaping is in place along parts of Wardelle Street.|
|430 Pico Affordable Housing, Brooks + Scarpa|
The impact of COVID-19 has been especially severe on low-income and those of modest economic means, and the lack of affordable housing places additional pressure on house prices and rent rates, further eroding affordability. Attaining a vibrant housing market depends heavily on whether the market can provide a broader and more affordable range of housing options for tomorrow’s households.
As reported on Habitat for Humanity’s website, based on a 2019 report:
“The latest data shows that nearly 38 million households nationwide — 31.5% of all households — are paying more than 30% of their incomes on housing. That’s 20.5 million renters and 17.3 million homeowners. This is just a slight half-percentage point drop from the previous year. Homeowners saw nearly all of the modest improvement, while a near-record share of renters — 47.4% — still face unaffordable rents. In the nation’s hottest housing market areas, those struggling with unaffordability increasingly include higher-income renters.”¹
A majority of housing being built now tends to be for the higher end of the market. The relative lack of smaller, more affordable new homes suggests that the rising costs of labor, land, and materials make it unprofitable to build for the middle market. By restricting the supply of land available for higher-density development, regulatory constraints and not-in-my-backyard (NIMBY) opposition may also add to the challenges of supplying more affordable types of housing.¹
The lowest-income families are often forced to make impossible choices between shelter and food, healthcare, education, and other basic needs. This deprivation is severe, predictable, and avoidable. Access to a stable, decent, affordable, and accessible home is essential to virtually every area of a person’s life. Housing is intrinsically connected to better health outcomes, economic mobility, employment prospects, and greater opportunities for people exiting the criminal justice system.²
Here are some questions that these studies point to:
¹The State of the Nation’s Housing 2019. Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.
²The Gap: A Shortage of Affordable Homes. March 2019. National Low Income Housing Coalition.
|The Big Draw Festival 2020|
The Big Draw is a visual literacy charity that promotes the universal language of drawing as a tool for learning, expression and invention. It’s an annual event that is held between the 1st to 31st of October. The charity leads a diverse program of advocacy, empowerment and engagement, and is the founder and driving force behind The Big Draw Festival – the world’s biggest celebration of drawing. The Big Draw manages collaborative research projects, campaigns and educational conferences on visual literacy, digital technology, and STEAM.
The types of organizations that hold the event include museums, schools, galleries, community centers, or simply people who are enthusiastic about drawing. Follow the link here to register for an event near you!
See The Big Draw 2020 MINIMAG for full details.