Friday, August 3, 2018

Martin LaMar on the Challenges of Toledo Housing

Martin LaMar on the Challenges of Housing in Toledo 

When Martin LaMar first arrived in Toledo to take over Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority (LMHA), he knew then and there it wasn’t going to be a walk in the park. The region was undergoing a huge change, which presented a number of challenges. The goal was to put up close to 200 new housing units that cost over $33 million overall. And it was a project that came in three phases. 

LaMar was quick to point out that three of the biggest tasks in the project were to update technology operations, collect data, and finally, market the LMHA.

It was evident at the onset that there was a gap between the technology at the agency’s disposal and the technology needed for the operation. To ensure more efficient communication, LaMar noted that an upgrade in their basic IT structure was a priority. This was going to be difficult with the annual decrease in funding.

One thing the lack of technology affected was the collection of accurate data on LMHA’s residents. This information, LaMar stressed, was of utmost importance since one of the agency’s aims was to align development with the specific needs to the residents, which were unique in many ways.

Marketing the LMHA, on the other hand, encountered a number of problems because as mentioned, Toledo had been undergoing a change wherein its citizens were migrating to a more progressive Atlanta.

All in all, LaMar did what he could with what he had, and in many ways, achieved a degree of success in helping the people of Toledo.

Martin LaMar worked with the Atlanta Housing Authority, holding positions such as Senior Project Manager, Director of Business Operations, and Director of Policy, Development, and Regulatory Affairs. He had shared his expertise with the Philadelphia Housing Authority as its Senior Vice President and Director of Resident Services and with Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority as its President and Chief Executive Officer. Learn more about Martin here.

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