At the end of 2019, we were excited for a new year and all it would bring—namely, two more xChats panels in Spring and Fall, and the beginnings of the next HousingX conference in Spring of 2021. HousingForward staff were just beginning to plan the first xChats event of 2020, to be held in Roanoke, when the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent shutdown threw all of our work into disarray. The future of HousingForward Virginia’s innovative event series was suddenly called into question.
But as it turns out, the shutdown forced us to rethink how we approach events, and the outcome was more successful than we ever expected. We hosted three standalone virtual events over the course of the year, each focused on a different aspect of the future of affordable housing.
In April, we explored the utility of land banks in returning vacant and underutilized properties to important community uses. In July, we brought together experts on accessory dwelling unit (ADU) policy and design to explore how little houses can make big differences. Then, in November, HousingForward and Hill Studio convened a roundtable of 30 housers from across Virginia to discuss how the pandemic has changed the future of affordable housing. In total, over 400 people registered to attend these three events.
While none of the events were specifically HousingX-branded, they all carried the spirit of innovation and adaptability forward through the pandemic. The same spirit ended up being reflected in the new name we chose in the midst of the lockdown: HousingForward Virginia.
Now, we’re ready to bring back HousingX. On May 26th at 9:30am ET, please join us for our first virtual xChats panel where we will welcome four housing experts and leaders from beyond our borders. Each presenter will have 15 minutes to talk about what they do and how it impacts the world of housing. Then, all four panelists will join together for a moderated discussion where we will dig into what Virginia can learn from their work. In the next week, we hope to announce our guest speakers and open up registration for this event.
In addition to our next event, we and our partners at 903 Creative and 28 Media have refreshed HousingX’s look and launched a brand new section of our website dedicated to all things HousingX.
To make sure you stay up to date on HousingX and more, make sure to check the “Events” box when you subscribe to our email list.
See news and updates for HousingX, and explore content from our 2019 events.