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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

October 4, 2014 at 8:55 AM

Affordable housing: Greater supply doesn’t equal affordability

The editorial “How to Keep Housing Affordable: Build More” [Opinion, Sept. 29] failed to address several key issues.

It is the destruction of affordable housing by developers that most directly impacts current residents. The widespread conversion of older apartments into upscale condos or rentals is driven by investor greed, without pity for the residential needs of the non-affluent population. In North Seattle, where I live, it is common to see the destruction of starter homes by builders who replace them with the largest, most expensive house the lot can hold.

Also, getting “more building cranes in the air” is the main goal of a tiny group of investors and developers, and by itself is no guarantee of affordable housing for poor people and families. In Seattle, the City Council has the power to impose stringent requirements on developers to preserve affordable housing, as other cities have done. So far, it has taken only timid steps and needs to act before more affordable housing is erased.

David Yao, Seattle

Comments | More in Housing | Topics: Affordable Housing, David Yao, Seattle City Council

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