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columbus department of development

Austin Place development just west of the Hilltop. Columbus is struggling to build enough housing to accomodate its rapidly growing population.
Adora Namigadde / WOSU

Under the 90-degree sun, two men in hard hats install air conditioners in the backs of apartments. A second pair climbs ladders to install windows, while another drills screws into white-painted doors.

Houses in Weinland Park
WOSU

Columbus' Affordable Housing Trust is getting $100 million from private investors like Huntington Bank and Nationwide Insurance to fund larger and more long-term projects. 

Marchers making their way across the Main Street Bridge. Columbus teachers are protesting tax abatements as their union negotiates a new contract.
Nick Evans / WOSU

Some held signs, most chanted, but Marisa Keith pushed a cart.

“This is my art cart,” she explains. “I wanted everybody to see that this is my classroom.”

Maggie Parks has been attending a homebuyer's class at Homeport in order to get down payment assistance. She closed on her house in Milo Grogan last September.
Nick Evans / WOSU

This is the second of a two-part series on affordable housing in Columbus. Read part one here.

On a recent Saturday morning, bleary-eyed prospective homeowners bundled in winter coats piled into a classroom at Homeport in northeast Columbus. Kerrick Jackson, who leads the course, opens with a question: How do you get downtown? 

Paul Sableman / Flickr

Dressed in an entirely pink outfit, Christina Bogardus is hunched over a computer at the Linden branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library. She says she comes here often to watch videos, chat online with friends, and over the last couple of months, apply for jobs.