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Shimberg Center for Housing Studies

Chart showing the increase in homelessness caused by the affordable housing shortage.
Miami For All, Inc. & Shimberg Center for Housing Studies, University of Florida

Student homelessness in Florida has almost tripled in the last decade to about 96,000 in the 2017-18 school year.

Those experiencing homelessness score lower on statewide assessments and have a lower high school graduation rate compared to students who are economically disadvantaged but have a place to live.

Like everywhere in Florida, Hillsborough County has a lack of affordable housing.

The issue has grown more acute due to a growing population, deep federal cuts to subsidized housing programs, and stagnant wages.

Construction in downtown Tampa
Daylina Miller / WUSF Public Media

High above downtown Tampa, giant construction cranes tower near what will become the city’s newest offering in luxury living. The project - 815 Water Street - will feature two towers of apartments and condominiums replete with amenities such as a rooftop bar, fitness center and a ground-level grocery store.

But drive just two miles west, and you will find the bulldozed cinder block remains of what used to be North Boulevard Homes, Tampa’s oldest public housing complex.

Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

For many people struggling to afford rent in Tampa, owning a home could provide more space, more stability and sometimes even a lower monthly cost.