Monday: Community Forum on Accessory Dwelling Proposal
Check out this event on Monday:
So what are accessory dwellings? The Arlington Connection explains:Community Forum: Housing Commission’s Accessory Dwelling ProposalWhen: 7:00 - 9:30 p.m., Monday, March 31, 2008 Where: Arlington Central Library Auditorium, 1015 North Quincy Street (nearest Metro: Ballston, very limited on-site parking) You will have the opportunity to:
Here are links to the Commission’s Accessory Dwelling Report which was submitted to the County Board in January. It recommends that the County Board amend the Zoning Ordinance to permit Accessory Dwellings. For more information, email Fran Lunney.
- Hear a presentation describing key elements of the proposal
- Ask questions about the proposal or what’s legal now
- Share your thoughts on what the County Manager should recommend to the County Board
Accommodations: To request assistance for persons with limited English proficiency or hearing impairments, please telephone the Arlington County Housing Division at 703.228.3760 as soon as possible (TTY 703.228.4611). Central Library is accessible to people with disabilities.
"Houses can sometimes renovate their basements to turn them into a living area," [Tejada] said in an interview. "Because of the cost of land these days, this is a way of creating housing."
TEJADA’S proposal dealt with accessory dwelling units. An accessory dwelling unit is a part of a home with its own kitchen and bathroom that could be rented out to a private party. They can be located in a basement, an attic, a garage, a second floor or in a free-standing structure such as a guest house.
Currently, renting out an accessory dwelling unit is not legal in Arlington unless it is rented to a family member. In his first speech as chairman on Jan. 1, Tejada described accessory dwelling units as "a new form of affordability in Arlington" and said that the law should be changed to permit them to be rented to private parties.
A similar change to allow for this was proposed in the early 1980’s but was killed after neighborhood representatives raised concerns about crowding issues. Now, with Arlington facing inflated land prices and a housing shortage, the idea has been resurrected by local officials.
THE COUNTY’S Housing Commission has been investigating this issue for several years and recently issued a report that recommended changing the housing laws to allow for the renting of accessory dwelling units.
The report said that allowing homeowners to rent out parts of their houses would not only increase affordable housing in Arlington but would also give the county’s elders the ability to "age in place through added income or space for caregivers."