Victory for YIMBY.
In an effort to address Washington’s housing crisis, Gov. Jay Inslee last week signed a bill allowing duplex and quadruple homes to be built in most urban neighborhoods, Associated Press report.
Under the new law, cities with 25,000 to 75,000 people must allow the construction of duplexes in all residential areas. Quadruplexes can be used anywhere if a unit is affordable, or in an area within a half-mile of a park, school or major transit station, according to the outlet. Quadruplets are permitted in all residential areas in cities with a population of more than 75,000 people.
The measure prevents municipalities from doing zoning that only allows single-family homes, The Associated Press reported.
The state is stepping up efforts to increase its housing stock, according to the Associated Press, as studies show that as many as 1 million homes will be needed over the next 20 years to keep up with a growing population.
“We’re going to make it easier to build housing in Washington of all shapes and sizes,” state Rep. Jessica Bateman told The Associated Press.
In recent years, states and cities across the country have tried to address the housing shortage by allowing multifamily construction in places where it has been prohibited. Some are more successful than others.
Gainesville, Fla., was set to become the first city in the state to eliminate single-family zoning citywide earlier this year, resulting in the city commission overturning a policy that would have allowed townhouses, triplexes and quadruples to be built. vote on land zoned for single-family homes in a college town, Bloomberg News.
The reversal could signal that the “in my backyard is” crowd faces an uphill battle in red states, following backlash from local residents and state Republicans who have threatened to intervene, according to the outlet.
Pro-housing advocates in Florida have been fighting exclusionary zoning as a response to rising housing prices and the removal of historical segregation, according to Bloomberg. But residents — concerned about possible declines in property values and more students moving into the neighborhood — objected to the measure, calling it a “costly, ill-conceived folly,” “unconscionable” and “unconscionable” in a Facebook group. Could be catastrophic,” the outlet said.— Ted Glazer