Austinites headed to ballot boxes next Tuesday will cast their votes on a $65 million affordable housing measure.
Despite widespread apartment construction, Austin is still struggling to keep up with everyone who wants to live here.
"Many of our blessings are what create the crisis on the affordable housing side," Paul Hilgers, CEO of the Austin Board of Realtors, said.
Hilgers’ group has joined the Austin Chamber of Commerce in supporting the bond.
"There are 38,000 families that work in Austin, but can't live here. This is not helpful to our employers or them,” Clark Heidrick with the Austin Chamber of Commerce said. “They aren't paying taxes here, and they're commuting down Interstate 35 and Mopac."
Supporters of the new measure touted successes which stemmed from previous bonds focused on affordable housing.
"We passed a bond issue in 2006 and that was pretty successful,” Hilgers said. “That bond was $55 million and it generated $200 million of direct investment into the properties as a result of that."
Heather Way with the University of Texas Law School specializes in affordable housing and community development.
"The success of our city is really defined by who can live here," she said. "A study by civic economists found that the bonds will generate over $800 million in positive economic impact in the city."
That $800 million total includes factors like decreased crime, better health, and a more stable life for residents created through living in a home.