12 policies to boost innovation, resilience and prosperity in cities
7. SUPPORT THE DEVELOPMENT OF COOPERATIVE HOUSING: Rents in major metropolitan areas are, quite frankly, ridiculously high. By banding together, like-minded residents can usually get more bang for their buck. Cities should see that as a good thing.
8. ENCOURAGE THE DEVELOPMENT OF SMALL APARTMENTS AND “TINY” HOMES:Municipal codes often include size restrictions for housing units that prohibit things like micro-apartments, tiny houses, yurts, and container homes — all of which are affordable, sustainable, shareable options.
9. FACTOR SHARING INTO THE DESIGN REVIEW OF NEW DEVELOPMENTS: Forward-thinking urban planning is vital to creating a Shareable City. Housing that encourages resident interaction and properties that include mixed-use units both start with a smart design.
Jobs! Jobs! Jobs! The sharing economy has a lot of potential to create jobs if only cities would help with policies to "lower the cost of starting businesses by supporting innovations like shared workspaces, shared commercial kitchens, community-financed start-ups, community-owned commercial centers, and spaces for 'pop-up' businesses." Oh, and cooperatives... they create high paying jobs that don't leave the community and aremore resilient.
10. EXPAND ALLOWABLE HOME OCCUPATIONS TO INCLUDE SHARING ECONOMY ENTERPRISE: The zoning codes that separate home life from commercial life — thereby making it illegal for many people to generate income at home — need to go. Full stop.
11. USE IDLE COMMERCIAL SPACES FOR COMMUNITY BENEFIT: The ratio of empty houses to homeless people is enough of a problem. Let cities not run the same game on commercial spaces. Instead, how about policies that facilitate the use of empty commercial spaces by startups in order to test products and services without a huge overhead and lease?
12. ASSIST COOPERATIVES THROUGH CITY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENTS:Local jobs, local money — that's what cooperatives are all about. Every city should provide support staff and resources to help folks wanting to set up a co-op. It's just good business.
Read or download the full report to learn about even more ideas for Shareable Cities.
Slideshow photo by Aaron Molina.