For the provision of public housing, a municipal housing authority uses federal funding from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to build and operate affordable housing units. Historically, these projects have consisted of concentrated blocks of low-rise and high-rise apartment complexes available for low-income residents. As opposed to other subsidized programs which grant subsidies to private landlords who then rent to low- and moderate-income people, public housing buildings are owned by a Housing Authority, therefore tenants must meet more specific eligibility criteria. According to HUD, there are approximately 1.2 million households living in public housing units, managed by some 3,300 Housing Authorities across the US. The Housing Authority is then in charge of assuring compliance with leases, transferring families from one unit to another, maintaining the development in a decent, safe, and sanitary condition, and providing low-income tenants with programs related to health and financial counseling
The program has grown significantly over time but per the Housing Act of 1937, the provision of public housing through the federal government was to allocate funding and improve the lives of low-income families. Internationally, public housing programs have been used as the underlying method to address housing inequalities and as a reaction to many of the world's urban slums. In Pittsburgh today, the Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh (HACP) oversees the management of 6 Family Communities, 11 Senior or Disabled High Rise Communities, and many other public housing projects scattered around the city. 5 of those projects are in the Northside and include Allegheny Dwellings, Northview Heights, Northview Heights Highrise, Pennsylvania Bidwell, and Pressley Street.