By D. Bradford Hunt
Now thought of a dysfunctional mess, Chicago’s public housing initiatives as soon as had lengthy ready lists of would-be citizens hoping to go away the slums in the back of. So what went unsuitable? to respond to this complex query, D. Bradford Hunt strains public housing’s historical past in Chicago from its New Deal roots via present mayor Richard M. Daley’s Plan for Transformation. within the technique, he chronicles the Chicago Housing Authority’s personal transformation from the city’s such a lot revolutionary govt enterprise to its biggest slumlord. not easy reasons that characteristic the tasks’ decline primarily to racial discrimination and genuine property pursuits, Hunt argues that well-intentioned yet faulty coverage decisions—ranging from layout offerings to upkeep contracts—also paved the line to failure. additionally, directors who totally understood the capability drawbacks didn't try and halt such deeply mistaken tasks as Cabrini-Green and the Robert Taylor houses. those significant high-rise complexes housed extraordinary numbers of youngsters yet quite few adults, engendering sickness that driven out the operating category and, for that reason, the rents had to hold the structures. The ensuing blend of economic hindrance, managerial incompetence, and social unrest plunged the CHA right into a quagmire from which it really is nonetheless suffering to emerge. Blueprint for catastrophe, then, is an pressing reminder of the havoc poorly conceived coverage can wreak on our such a lot weak electorate.