Affordable Suburban Housing
Mary Chao, Staff Writer
One of Unite Rochester’s passion topics is affordable housing in the suburbs so all children may have access to quality education. As the real estate reporter at D&C and a long time Brighton resident, I wanted to point out that affordable suburban housing is available, at least in the town of Brighton.
I am warmed by stories of immigrant success, recalling that my friend Heidi Hu Ames’ tale about her brother’s determination to send his son to a good public school. She sponsored her brother and nephew over a decade ago for immigration from China. As a single parent without any English language skills, he rented a small one-bedroom apartment for $650 a month on Monroe Avenue so his son could attend Brighton High School. As Monroe Avenue is on a major RTS bus route, he is able to get to his dishwashing /table busing jobs, working three jobs to make ends meet. Imagine how difficult it is to get by without language or driving skills. But he was been able to pool together a living working menial jobs while providing quality education for his son.
That’s just one immigrant success story in Brighton. As I look around the schools and community, I see diversity when it comes to race and socioeconomic status. Walk through the halls of any Brighton school and you’ll find many immigrant children–some with parents who are professionals and others that hail from working class backgrounds. Areas along French Road, Monroe Avenue, Elmwood Avenue and Edgewood Avenue offer affordable apartments, many priced at the same level of city housing as they are older buildings without all the bells and whistles.