The shadow of success: Inside Silicon Valley’s affordable housing crisis

A tech boom in Silicon Valley is spurring rapid economic growth. But the newly created jobs span vastly different income levels. What happens when the majority of the region’s workforce can’t afford to live here?

Jennifer Kelly used to seek refuge in her $1,750-a-month, two-bedroom downtown Campbell home.

The former tech sales manager, who made up to $180,000 a year working at startups during the last decade, had a routine of working out on her in-home Stairmaster or taking joy rides in her sports car to relax after 14-hour workdays.

Now Kelly, who didn’t want her real name used for this story, is stringing together short-term contract work and sleeping in an aging SUV that she parks on a rotating slate of dead-end streets in Silicon Valley.

“Professionally, I’m at director level,” she said. “I had a safety net.”

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