“The District,” a Granville housing complex in Fresno’s Tower District. Credit: Melissa Montalvo / Fresno Bee / Fresnoland

Fresnoland and CalMatters are co-hosting a live journalism event to examine housing affordability in Fresno this Thursday, June 15th, from 6 – 8 p.m. at the Fresno Art Museum. Register to attend the event in person or virtually! All ages are welcome.

The Fresno area has historically been understood as the last remaining affordable region of California. The pandemic upended this. Fresno renters are now facing some of the highest increases of any metro across the United States. For those looking to buy, affordability has gone down, especially for prospective homebuyers who are Latino. Unlike other unaffordable regions in California, the barriers to housing affordability look different here, as the city takes an approach that avoids restrictions of any kind. Rent control remains deeply unpopular with policymakers. The city continues to eliminate zoning restrictions, with much of downtown and the city’s transit corridors subject to by-right zoning or even a ministerial process for housing. The vast majority of housing permits in Fresno are still for single-family subdivisions on the outlying fringe of the city. What are the solutions? What’s on the table? Can Fresno figure out how to build a lot more housing and fast – while avoiding renter displacement? What’s the state’s role?

Ben Christopher, a housing reporter at CalMatters, will serve as the moderator. Joining us as panelists to unpack the crisis facing our region are:

  • Alexandra Alvarado, Lead Housing Community Organizer, Faith in the Valley
  •  Elliott Balch, President and CEO, Downtown Fresno Partnership
  •  Danielle Bergstrom, Founder and Executive Director, Fresnoland
  •  Michael Duarte, Chief Real Estate Officer, Fresno Housing Authority

All attendees are invited to a reception in the museum lobby immediately following the panel. Light appetizers, refreshments, and beer donated by Full Circle Brewing Co. will be provided. We look forward to seeing you there!

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