Editor: I am increasingly worried that the alarmist voices of a few will drown out the majority voice of reason in conversations around affordable housing in Arlington.
Creating opportunities for “missing middle” housing is vital to Arlington’s future. There are solid opportunities available through a combination of zoning and building regulations that would incentivize a range of housing across the entire county, but particularly in areas closer to transportations corridors.
This is not an easy conversation to have, and I understand why it may make some uncomfortable, but the county government should be applauded for diving in and asking for our input.
The hard truth is that fewer and fewer Arlingtonians can afford the financing required to buy a single-family home, and many struggle to keep any housing option for their families in the county – houses, duplexes, apartments are all expensive and scarce.
Duplexes and triplexes and other housing options help alleviate supply-side constraints that are a big driver of housing costs in the county.
No one is suggesting high-rises would wholesale replace residential neighborhoods in North Arlington; changes to housing stock are more gradual and gentler than some have suggested.
I would ask us all to consider the following: When we say we don’t want density, what are we really saying? Who are we really excluding from the advantages the county affords to those who live here? Shouldn’t Arlington be for everyone?
Pam Quanrud, Arlington