ASF QUESTIONS FOR ARLINGTON COUNTY BOARD JULY 7 SPECIAL ELECTION CANDIDATES
MAY 28, 2020
KEY ISSUE #4: DIVERSITY
Question 4 (one part):
Housing Affordability - The county is losing demographic and economic diversity as a consequence of economic and development trends of the past two decades. ASF believes that key zoning decisions of past boards, and plans for denser zoning known as Missing Middle Housing, will only exacerbate these trends. How would you propose to address this challenge during your term in office?
Taki Karantonis Response:
We are losing our demographic and economic diversity because the price of land and the cost of housing have risen astronomically since 2010. As Vice-Chair of the Alliance for Housing Solutions, I have been a strong supporter of the County’s Housing Grant Program and have advocated of more funding in the Affordable Housing Investment Fund. Yet I believe that these tools are insufficient to provide the housing we will need to ensure that our diverse community stays diverse.
A key solution to this crisis, given the law of supply and demand, is to build more housing where appropriate. During the nearly decade-long planning for a revitalized Columbia Pike we learned that, with the right mix of transportation options, density enhancements, public space, tree requirements and community engagement, it is possible to provide a wider range of housing affordability in a long-established corridor. I strongly support the planning led by the Lee Highway Alliance and will continue to advocate for a comprehensive solution on this key corridor.
As we look to the future, I am a strong advocate for the work being done on Missing Middle. After years of work on housing in Arlington, I am convinced that these housing forms, which provide gentle density and thoughtful transitions between neighborhood-serving retail and single-family neighborhoods, will lead to a variety of housing options that are not currently present in Arlington today. These forms will help preserve our diversity as they provide choices in size and price for diverse Arlingtonians - especially young families and seniors who want to age in place in this community.