Petition: Build Ten Thousand Homes!

In the present housing crisis, thousands of people are on the streets and thousands more are strugglingto afford housing. The reasons for this are not hard to understand. Seattle has been adding jobs at a much faster rate than we’ve been adding housing. Competition for existing housing and the high cost of new construction has caused prices to skyrocket.

The measures that the city has enacted thus far have been an important start, but just a start. Only by dramatically expanding the supply of housing can we meet current and future demand. For low-income people, expanding the supply of affordable units is the only way we can avoid further displacement and financial hardship.

We the undersigned hereby encourage the Seattle City Council, Mayor, and our elected representatives to commit to the most ambitious housing program in Seattle’s history. We declare our support for this program and commit to welcoming more homes and more families into each of our own neighborhoods.

Building ten thousand homes will require us to Re-Imagine Affordable Housing. To do this, the city council building on the Housing and Livability Agenda (HALA) report in order to expand housing options and affordability. We support the following measures as part of this effort:

  • Increase Funding. Housing is expensive, and many families don’t have enough income to afford rising costs. In order to ensure that every family has a safe place to live we must take an “all of the above” approach to funding options. This can and must include a high earners income tax like that proposed by the “Trump Proof Seattle” coalition.

  • Expand Finance for Non-profit housing By expanding low interest loans for we can built a lot more housing and support innovative models that build non-profit ownership.

  • Add Family Zoning to our neighborhoods.

    • Family zoning is a concept for rezoning Seattle to allow multi-family and single family structures to exist side by side. If we are to remain a welcoming city, we must find ways to welcome new people into our neighborhoods and avoid channeling growth in ways that cause displacement.

  • Improved Design Let’s fund a design competition and pilot project to build the best possible quality buildings, buildings that will serve as models for future housing in our neighborhoods.

  • Developer Competitions

    • Seattle is already experimenting with developer competitions around new light rail stations. In these competitions, developers compete on affordability and livability. We propose expanding this to include land throughout the city. Vienna has had great success with this, achieving high quality housing with over 50% of it publicly owned or controlled. If they can do it, so can we!

We the undersigned hereby urge our elected representatives to move forward with these proposals with all possible speed. We understand these things won’t happen instantly, but we need to start now!

Will you sign?


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