In late October Department of Urban Planning Professor Kirk McClure was among a set of internationally-known speakers who presented their research as a part of the University of Sydney’s Festival of Urbanism in Sydney, Australia. He spoke on housing and the global financial crisis and what it means for Australia and the U.S. The Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute sponsored the event.
McClure, who often advises the U.S. government on housing issues, presented his research on the housing bubble, “Housing Markets, the Global Financial Crisis and City Planning."
"The industry is very good at building.” said McClure, “Unfortunately it is not very good at reining itself in when it reaches an over-built condition."
He described how and why the bubble burst in 2007, with devastating effects on the housing markets in many countries.
During the run-up to the market crash more than double the number of homes required to meet demand were built in the U.S., McClure said. And, he noted the recovery has been imperfect here: official statistics show that the industry is still building homes faster than households to occupy them are forming.
McClure outlined the lessons that planners need to learn from the housing bubble to prevent future damage to housing markets from reoccurring. And, in a statement of caution he said, "If there is any strong message for Australia it's that you need careful growth management.”
Late in October the Journal of Planning Education and Research honored McClure as a Top Reviewer for 2014 during the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning conference in Philadelphia. He serves on the journal’s Board of Editors.
Also at the conference, McClure presented two papers along with their co-authors. “The Housing Choice Voucher Program and Movement to Jobs“ was presented with Michael C. Lens, Assistant Professor of Urban Planning, at UCLA.
McClure and, Alex Schwartz, Professor of Urban Policy at the New School, New York City, presented the paper, “A Silver Lining?: The Growth of Single-Family Rental Housing in the Wake of the Housing Crisis.”
McClure has taught in the Department of Urban Planning at KU since 1987, in addition to working as a consultant and investigator. He received his PhD in city planning from U.C. Berkeley, and a Masters in City Planning from MIT after graduating with Bachelors degrees in architecture and urban studies at KU.
Before going to graduate school he held positions as a mortgage analyst in Massachusetts, and an architect and planner in Dublin, Ireland.