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Community Developers and Financial Capability practitioners of all types are invited to join these interactive learning and action-planning session where Dr. Ned Murray and his team share the results of their research insights around the future of Community Development, and engage participants in thoughtful conversation and potential action-planning to adopt elements of the 21st-century approach to enhancing the vitality of our Florida communities.

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Most home values in Little Haiti range from $73,000 to $180,000, a 2015 study by FIU”s Jorge M. Perez Metropolitan Center found. In neighboring, historically African-American Liberty City and Model City, to the west, investors are buying similar homes and renovating them to resell at prices ranging from $200,000 to over $300,000. Buyers come from the area or overwhelmingly Hispanic Hialeah farther west, where prices have risen even more.

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The predictions for affordable housing may mean a brighter tomorrow but, for now, Floridians are looking elsewhere as rent and cost of living inches higher. Over half of Miami’s population, 70%, are renters, according to research by Florida International University’s Jorge M. Pérez Metropolitan Center. And a good chunk of the population spends over 30% of their paycheck each month on housing, which is more than what’s recommended for housing costs.

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The National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Convergence Accelerator program has awarded a $1 million grant to a team of FIU researchers to evaluate the automation needs of the architecture, engineering and construction industries and develop a training program in partnership with several local firms and global industry experts. The FIU project is led by Professor Shahin Vassigh from the College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts (CARTA) and involves faculty from the Metropolitan Center.

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Maria Ilcheva, professor at Florida International University’s Pérez Metropolitan Center, said it appears major U.S. cities are increasingly priced for a globally mobile population, creating a situation where only the very top slices of income groups — and the very bottom that service them — can live. “The middle is being displaced,” she said.

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Affordable housing is the prime focus for the two open houses organized for later this month by the City of Miami and Florida International University. City officials and FIU, which is conducting the research through its Jorge M. Perez Metropolitan Center, invite residents to discuss possible solutions and strategies for the affordable housing shortage, according to a release. The two talks will host the same discussion.

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In a new report, the Florida International University Jorge M. Pérez Metropolitan Center finds that between 2012 and 2017, Miami-Dade added about 5,000 new manufacturing jobs, an increase of 14 percent. “The sector continues to grow,” said Maria Ilcheva, a Metropolitan Center professor and author of the report. “This is a good confirmation of what’s occurring after decades of decline.”

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At last night's city commission meeting, Kevin Greiner, a development planner with the FIU Metropolitan Center who sat on the evaluation committee, called it "a potentially transformative project for Dania Beach" and said that "the financial deal proposed to the city is excellent for the city ... the economics are extremely exceptional from the city's perspective."

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Jorge M. Perez Metropolitan Center is conducting a needs assessment of individuals with special needs for the Town of Miami Lakes. This research will specifically seek to understand service gaps for residents with physical and neurological disabilities and provide recommendations for services for this population.

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Kevin Greiner, Research Fellow at the Florida International University Metropolitan Center, talks about his data analysis that shows jobs and wages lost during the Great Recession have not returned in many parts of the state.

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