As seen in the Cap Times, the article Study says homeless facilities may up value of nearby property and the study it draws upon will probably be mentioned in the future by supporters of the Youth Services and Salvation Army proposals.

Without citing more than one study from one major metropolitan city, in this instance Philadelphia, a case can hardly be made for increasing property values but it is an interesting place to start. Studying that impact is precisely what Youth Services and Salvation Army could do before approaching the Darbo community and looking to our Neighborhood Resource Team for support. Also referenced should be third-party analyses of how these agencies have offered and operated their services in the past. Regarding Salvation Army’s intention to build a homeless and transitional housing campus on Darbo, it would be helpful knowing how communities in other cities were affected by a Salvation Army expansion of this size.

The value increase mentioned in the article relies on bulky conditions—access to capital, resources, effective management, education, after care—and values are still subject to throes of economic contraction. With the seriousness of what’s at stake, I fail to see how a substantial argument can hinge on the word may.

-Alfonso

Reminder: The listening meeting for Youth Services proposal is January 16 at 6:30 in the Salvation Army basement.