As Houston moves from relief to long term recovery, the City is preparing a plan for the $1.2 billion that will be received from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in the fall. In order for this money to be spent in the most useful and effective way, the Housing and Community Development Department (HCDD) partnered with local community organizations, super neighborhood councils, City Council districts, and civic clubs to organize 17 public meetings to assess housing and recovery needs and priorities in Houston. [bc] and the Community Design Resource Center (CDRC) designed interactive work sessions to better engage diverse communities in Houston and build the department's capacity to facilitate and implement community engagement activities as part of their programs. A summary of the findings from these meetings as well as the Houston local action plan were publicly released by the HCDD on June 26, 2018.
These community meetings took place in various neighborhoods and engaged over 800 people. At these meetings, surveys were collected in order to track people’s personal circumstances and needs since Harvey, but the majority of the discussions were aimed at talking about their neighborhoods as a whole. This neighborhood-level feedback was documented through a round-robin discussion format and mapping exercises. Residents also had the opportunity to prioritize housing and infrastructure programs for which the CDBG-DR funds could be used.
We look forward to continuing to work with the City of Houston to engage diverse communities!