Column: How catastrophes like the Ghost Ship fire are making cities like L.A. rethink their housing crises


The Bay Area’s housing costs are so preposterous that this year, Palo Alto — the capital of rich-tech —  was considering housing subsidies for working families earning as much (or as little) as $127,560 a year. Los Angeles’ housing market looks reasonable by comparison. The wide-open vistas belie the fact that Los Angeles is the densest urban space in the country — too few places to live and too many people wanting to live here. Raphael Bostic, who was an assistant secretary at the department of Housing and Urban Development, is now at USC’s school of public policy, and he considers how the many catastrophes of the Oakland fire have made cities like L.A. rethink their own housing crises.

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Dec. 15: Raphael Bostic, a former assistant secretary at the department of Housing and Urban Development who is now at USC’s school of public policy, stated in the “Patt Morrison Asks” podcast and column that a downtown project by the U.S. subsidiary of the Chinese-based real estate development firm Greenland had been marketed “almost exclusively” to Chinese families. In fact, the company says, it has marketed here and sold “more than 50%” of its Metropolis properties domestically.