How Frey plans to fix Minneapolis' affordable housing crisis

Mayor-elect Jacob Frey sits for a portrait
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey.
Evan Frost | MPR News 2017

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey campaigned on promises of new affordable housing.

Frey is now six months into his first term, and recently announced plans to spend $50 million to create more affordable housing in the city.

He spoke with MPR's Kerri Miller Tuesday morning, and said he plans to use several techniques to fix the city's housing crisis. One is inclusionary zoning.

"You tell the developers, if you want to build near a valuable asset, like the riverfront, then you need to incorporate a certain number of units as affordable," he said.

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But that won't solve the problem by itself. Some projects, he said, will have to be subsidized. That's where the $50 million comes in.

"We are going to have to bridge the gap between market rate, and the affordable rate," he said. "And the only way to incentivise it is money."

Frey's 2019 budget will also include some money to hire more police officers. During his campaign, Frey called for reforms in the Minneapolis Police Department.

"Community, police relations have suffered in the last few years," he said. "Especially among communities of color. We have a lot of trust rebuilding to do."

Right now, he said, the city's police officers are overworked, and just don't have the time to build trust.

"They're just running from 911 call to 911 call," he said.

More details on public safety and affordable housing will be released in August, along with the city's 2019 budget.

Use the audio player above to listen to their entire conversation.

Correction (June 5, 2018): A previous version of this story incorrectly reported the number of officers Frey expected to fund. The story has been updated.