SITES AND SERVICES, CHARKOP, INDIA
The World Bank is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. In the early 1980s, the Bank established a “sites and services” project in Charkop, Mumbai, India, which aimed to provide incremental, affordable housing solutions to low- and middle-income groups in the region. The project did not achieve the intended outcomes in the timeline initially defined; therefore, the Bank abandoned the approach. The Bank revisited the site 20 years later and observed a flourishing mixed-income and mixed-use neighborhood. As the region considered how to house the next “urban billion”-an urban population of one billion-the Bank enlisted a Capstone team to research the factors that led to the neighborhood's success. The team created a survey protocol and administered it to 60 households in Charkop to understand how physical and administrative design elements contributed to the livability of the neighborhood. The project culminated in a report and an interactive presentation of interview data, which provided insight into the factors that played a role in the development of Charkop.
FAIR SHARE PLAN AND FORMULA FOR CONNECTICUT
The Open Communities Alliance (OCA) is a civil rights nonprofit organization in Connecticut that promotes access to opportunity for all people through education, advocacy, research, and partnerships. OCA's opportunity mapping work has shown that low-opportunity areas in Connecticut contain a disproportionate amount of affordable housing. To promote housing choice and the deconcentration of poverty in Connecticut, the Capstone team conducted best practices research on fair share planning, analyzed existing conditions and planning efforts in Connecticut, and developed a Fair Share Housing Plan to propose statewide adoption. The final report utilizes a series of criteria to allocate a portion of the statewide demand for affordable housing to select municipalities that will then be encouraged to meet production targets through a series of policy incentives.
MEASURING THE IMPACT OF ADVOCACY CONDUCTED BY BUSINESS IMPROVEMENT DISTRICTS
The New York City Department of Small Business Services (SBS) helps unlock economic potential and create greater economic security for all New Yorkers by connecting residents to good jobs, creating stronger businesses, and building a fairer economy in neighborhoods across the five boroughs. As the oversight agency for the City's Business Improvement District (BID) program, the SBS Neighborhood Development Division monitors the fiscal and organizational health of all 73 BIDs in New York City. SBS enlisted a Capstone team to assess the impact of the BID program's advocacy and identify needed resources. The team conducted focus group discussions with SBS, developed and implemented a survey administered to all 73 BIDs, and conducted in-depth interviews with select BID executive directors to define BID advocacy and determine measurement methods. Based on the collected and analyzed data, the team compiled a final comprehensive report with recommendations that included a framework for measuring the BID program's advocacy going forward.
FEASIBILITY ANALYSIS: AFFORDABLE CO-OP SHAREHOLDER MORTGAGES
The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) is the largest municipal housing agency in the nation. HPD promotes quality housing and thriving neighborhoods through the implementation of affordable housing preservation and development programs. The Housing Development Fund Corporation (HDFC) has developed approximately 1,050 shareholder-owned cooperatives in NYC containing a total of more than 25,000 units, making them a significant percentage of the City's affordable housing stock. HPD solicited a Capstone team to evaluate shareholder access to financing and determine the types of risks that lenders take to underwrite these loans. The team performed a detailed analysis of HPD's proposed HDFC co-op regulatory agreements, interviewed lenders on their underwriting terms for limited equity co-ops, and performed a comparison of the City's existing HDFC tax exemption with a newly proposed model. This analysis helped HPD assess the impacts of newly proposed regulatory agreements on the ability of future shareholders to obtain financing.
2004 DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN REZONING
Brooklyn Community Board 2 (CB2) is one of 59 geographically exclusive, independent New York City agencies that serve as the most local form of representative government. In 2004, the New York City Council passed the Downtown Brooklyn Rezoning plan, which aimed to further the growth of the area as New York City's third largest Central Business District. Brooklyn CB2 engaged a Capstone team in conducting a comprehensive needs assessment based on the impacts of the 2004 Downtown Brooklyn Rezoning plan to inform its responses to city charter-mandated budget submissions. The team analyzed existing conditions associated with five areas: public schools, parks and open space, pedestrians and transit, water and sewer capacity, and affordable housing. The team created and analyzed a survey to gather resident concerns, interviewed prominent community and city stakeholders, and produced recommendations for future neighborhood improvements to mitigate the impacts.
EVALUATING THE SUSTAINABILITY OF COMMUNITY PRACTICES TO REDUCE VETERAN HOMELESSNESS
The Rapid Results Institute (RRI) strives to bridge the gap between aspirations and impact by choreographing 100-day challenges that nudge communities, organizations, and government agencies-often working together-to achieve improbable results. RRI enlisted a Capstone team to assess which practices within communities and organizations are sustainable in working to reduce veteran homelessness. The team conducted an analysis through a survey distributed to past participating communities and in-depth case study interviews with communities that had various degrees of continued success after their participation in the 100-day challenge. In the final report, the team suggested leadership skills training, capacity building, and a community assessment before the challenge to optimize RRI's future success. The team also recommended post-challenge evaluations in time intervals in each community to better assess which practices are sustainable and why.
TRANSITIONING TO PATIENT-CENTERED CARE: BEST PRACTICES
Project Hospitality is a community-based nonprofit organization that addresses the broad spectrum of basic, clinical, and social needs of homeless and food-insecure residents of Staten Island, New York. The organization is currently undergoing a transition from a traditional fee-for-service billing model to a value-based payment system, reflecting a national shift in healthcare funding. Project Hospitality engaged a Capstone team in determining whether the organization was on track to provide necessary information to illustrate outcomes within the framework of patient-centered care. The team produced a broad overview and analysis of Project Hospitality's clients and services, researched best practices for value-based payment systems, and conducted a program-level analysis of patient outcomes. The final report served as a blueprint to assist Project Hospitality as it continues to adapt to the changing landscape of healthcare practices.
IMPROVING EFFICIENCY OF PUBLIC HOUSING WORK ORDER PROCESS
The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) is the largest landlord in New York City, with about 178,000 apartments across the five boroughs. With its scarce financial resources and limited staffing capability, NYCHA struggles to process the approximately 2.8 million repair requests that it receives annually, resulting in a significant backlog. Dedicated to operating more efficiently, NYCHA enlisted a Capstone team to conduct an in-depth analysis of its work order data and processes. Focusing on NYCHA developments in the borough of Brooklyn, the team conducted quantitative and qualitative analyses, including site visits and interviews, to better understand the root causes of the work order backlog. The team developed recommendations for NYCHA to enhance the allocation of scarce resources, improve service levels for work orders, and boost the overall quality of life for NYCHA residents.