So your solution to an undersupply of housing is to further limit the market’s ability to create it, and instead rely on old public housing ideas which have only proved disastrous? The only thing that fixes a market shortage is either increased supply, or reduced demand. Although many RS old timers would love to see the young “entitled” millennials driven out of the city, reducing demand is not going to happen. That means we need to focus on increasing supply, and building our way out of this shortage.
Real Estate development is a complicated industry. I don’t support their use of political influence to reap themselves big profits at the tax payer’s expense, but at the end of they day what they create is the housing that New York City badly needs. Instead of creating red tape and limiting the size of developments, let’s encourage developers to build sustainably, but densely. Let’s fight the typical reactionary, anti-gentrification, NIMBY politics that “community preservationist” groups use to prevent and limit the size of developments in their neighborhoods.
As to your idea of large public works projects that is just not going to happen. Neither the political will nor the huge financing that would be necessary exists to accomplish it. Furthermore, large public housing works become localized crime centers, dragging both the surrounding neighborhoods and their own tenants down with them. Instead let’s build enough apartments that prices come down low enough that poor people can afford them.