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I found "Blueprint for Disaster: The Unraveling of Chicago Public Housing" very educational about why the US had such poorly implemented public housing (at least in Chicago).

Early efforts were mixed income, small and in desirable locations. They were also by many measures very successful. That model was moved away from because it eroded the power base of the political leaders of the day and for straight up racist reasons.

Its also largely a myth that the large block, low income model was ever seen as likely to succeed. Public housing experts and advocates at the time anticipated the disastrous results that came about.




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