On Monday, the City of Seattle is kicking off the public hearing process for the citywide Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA) rezones at Eckstein Middle School in Wedgwood. The citywide rezones would apply to all urban villages and multifamily zoned land in Seattle, adding one or more stories of buildable height in exchange for affordability requirements ranging from 5 % to 11% of units (or paying the corresponding in-lieu fees). The citywide rezones are necessary to get to the 6,300 affordable rent-restricted units the City has promised over the next ten years under MHA.
The Seattle City Council plans to take action on the citywide MHA rezones in July, but first the package must survive a slough of public hearings with rezone opponents rallying a last-ditch effort to undermine the effort–not to mention a lawsuit by a group of homeowners calling themselves SCALE attempting to block it entirely. MHA supporters are trying to match their intensity and see the rezones through. We could use your help Monday night to testify and rally support.
So please attend the public hearing is Monday, February 12th 5pm to 8pm at Eckstein Middle School Auditorium (3003 NE 75th St Seattle, WA 98115) if you’re able. More details are available on Seattle For Everyone’s event page.
More information about MHA and the Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda (HALA) more broadly is available on our site. A few of our highlights:
- Broke down the basics of citywide MHA rezones via the Draft Environmental Impact Statement here.
- Looked at the finalized maps and plan presented in the Final Environmental Impact Statement here.
- Delved into just how MHA will increasing building capacity and how this relates to the different affordability requirement levels.
- We also looked at the legal underpinnings of inclusionary zoning and why MHA is likely to withstand legal challenge.
The featured image of Nathan Eckstein Middle School is by Joe Mabel, CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikipedia Commons.
Doug Trumm is the executive director of The Urbanist. An Urbanist writer since 2015, he dreams of pedestrianizing streets, blanketing the city in bus lanes, and unleashing a mass timber building spree to end the affordable housing shortage and avert our coming climate catastrophe. He graduated from the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance at the University of Washington. He lives in East Fremont and loves to explore the city on his bike.