The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and its new Secretary, Dr. Ben Carson, recently outlined an aggressive initiative to bring technology to public housing communities.

The proposed advances are set to empower communities by providing residents with opportunities that will allow them to move out of public housing.

PlanNet met with David Byrd, the Deputy Under Secretary for HUD, last week on May 16 to further discuss the program, and its objectives which include:

  • providing reliable Internet connectivity to resident’s in HUD housing;
  • supporting the educational needs of children in HUD housing;
  • increasing safety for those living in housing, by providing tools such as smart lighting on sidewalks during the evening, and tools to law enforcement, such as video surveillance for overall public safety; and by
  • providing additional ridership data to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) for better commuter transit service.

In addition to this technology enhancement project, HUD will place greater emphasis on the Section 3 program, which requires HUD builders to provide job training, employment, and contract opportunities for low-income residents in connection with projects in their neighborhoods.

HUD Looks to Technology

From left to right: Scott Dahle of PlanNet; David Byrd, Deputy Under Secretary for HUD; Pastor Shannon Wright, Vice Chair Republican Party Maryland; Chad Gordon of PlanNet