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October 3, 2013 at 7:00 AM
A few irate neighbors in Bellevue don’t like pop-up boardinghouses on their street. The Bellevue City Council’s response so far is to consider an emergency ordinance to cap home occupancy to four unrelated roommates, according to this Monday Seattle Times news report.
They should think carefully about this. If giant, gargantuan homes and visions of “Animal House”-style neighbors is the problem, then city leaders ought to first consider revising design standards before these buildings go up in the first place.
Limiting the number of people who can live under one roof could aggravate the Eastside’s shortage of affordable housing. To understand the problem, click on this link to see a helpful infographic by the Housing Development Consortium, a King County advocacy organization.
The boardinghouse boom is a response to local demand. Bellevue College is converting to a four-year school. Students and low-to-moderate-income workers in the area cannot afford to live in the current housing market. Those who do often end up paying more than the standard 30 percent of their income on housing and utilities. (more…)