In an effort to expand affordable housing inventory, Arlington County Board adopts new accessory dwelling standards.
In Arlington County there is an increasing lack of affordable and “missing middle” housing options. This April, the County Manager presented “Housing Arlington,” a new umbrella initiative to tackle this problem through several connected programs.
For one of the first steps in this initiative, the Arlington County Board adopted new Accessory Dwelling standards. These new standards will allow residents to build new detached accessory dwellings. They will also make it easier to convert existing accessory buildings into accessory dwellings.
Accessory dwellings are independent dwellings, including a kitchen and bath, that can house up to 3 people. This can include basement apartments, renovated garages or guesthouses, or separate structures built exclusively to be an accessory dwelling.
This can allow seniors to age in place. They can take a house that has become too big for their needs and turn it into a smaller living space. It also becomes a supplemental source of income.
These dwellings can also open up lower-priced housing alternatives in otherwise out-of-reach neighborhoods. Many higer-priced neighborhoods may be more convenient to work or childcare for lower-income families.