The Washington Post: Region’s elected officials urge their governments to commit to affordable-housing targets

The Washington Post, Sept. 11, 2019: Region’s elected officials urge their governments to commit to affordable-housing targets

Washington-area elected officials voted Wednesday to push their local governments to address the region’s affordable-housing shortage by setting individual targets to increase production of low- and medium-cost housing by 2030.

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) said the region needs to add 320,000 housing units between 2020 and 2030 — 75,000 more units than forecast.

Of those, at least three-quarters should be affordable to low- and middle-income households, according to a resolution approved unanimously by the COG board, which means they should cost $2,500 a month or less.

In addition, at least three-quarters should be in employment centers or near transit, to reduce commuting times and curb the region’s chronic traffic congestion, COG said.

The COG proposal, in the works for more than a year, sets what many officials and experts view as a necessary and worthy goal for the region. The alternative, they warned, is a housing crisis similar to those seen on the West Coast.

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