Affordable Housing

The Affordable Housing Planning and Appeals Act (AHPAA) was adopted to address the lack of moderately-priced housing that exists in many communities in Illinois.  The AHPAA requires counties and municipalities with less than 10% affordable housing to adopt an Affordable Housing Plan that identifies how the Village will pursue increasing available affordable housing and what incentive(s) will be offered to developers to encourage affordable housing development.

According to the Illinois Housing Development Authority’s (IHDA) 2018 report, the Village of River Forest affordable housing share is 9.0%.  The Village seeks to improve the percentage of affordable housing units in the Village to at least 10% of its total housing stock.  The Village’s Affordable Housing Plan states that this goal will be pursued by:

  • Protecting and enhancing the existing affordable housing that currently exists in the Village, primarily the multi-family residential housing along the Village’s perimeter corridors
  • Concentrating attention on new multi-family and mixed-use buildings and providing developers of such buildings the opportunity to include affordable housing units

The Village’s Affordable Housing Plan recommends that the Village use zoning “bonuses” as one way to encourage developers to include affordable housing units in new multi-family buildings.  In addition to adopting zoning “bonuses” as a preferred incentive to encourage affordable housing development, the Village’s Affordable Housing Plan also recommends that the Village consider additional measures that are outlined in below and in the Implementation Matrix.

  1. Amending the River Forest Zoning ordinance to allow for taller and more dense development in designated commercial/mixed-use areas, consistent with the recommendations of the Comprehensive Plan, in order to better accommodate possible inclusion of affordable housing as part of new development.
  2. Identifying strategies and the means with which to preserve and enhance existing affordable housing in the Village, such as possible funding or programs aimed at assisting with upkeep, maintenance, and improvements to identify existing affordable housing properties.
  3. Amending the River Forest Zoning Ordinance to accommodate Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU) as a conditional use in the R1 and R2 zoning districts.
  4. Amending the River Forest Zoning Ordinance, and possibly other Village regulations, to specifically accommodate “integrated supportive housing.”
  5. Amending the River Forest Zoning Ordinance, specifically the Planned Development standards (section 10-19-3) to identify consistency with the goals and policies of the Affordable Housing Plan as a standard of review.
  6. Establishing possible TIF fund allocation guidelines for the Village to assist in the provision of affordable housing development and initiatives in River Forest, including development of new affordable housing and the improvement and enhancement of existing affordable housing.

This Affordable Housing Plan, and our follow through on the plan’s actionable recommendations, will allow our community to better accommodate and support the provision of affordable housing in River Forest to get to at least 10% affordable housing overall.

Developers who plan to propose an Affordable Housing project should review the Village’s Development Guide and contact Village Staff to learn more about the Village’s planned development application, review, and approval process.

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