A Backlash Against Micro-Units Brews in Seattle

  • May 1, 2013

by Shilpi Paul

A Backlash Against Micro-Units Brews in Seattle: Figure 1
Three micro-studios. Image courtesy of R2L Architects. Click to enlarge.

As micro-units keep sprouting up in DC, it may be instructive to look and see how the tiny homes are being regarded in cities that have had them for a while.

Seattle, which has a population similar to the District’s, hopped on the micro-unit trend a few years ago. According to a recent article, 48 micro-housing projects have been approved by the city since 2006. Seattle’s micro-units are between 150 and 200 square feet, and are being marketed towards young people, students, retirees and others who value proximity to urban amenities over size.

However, with hundreds available on the rental market, some Seattlites are not too happy with the trend.

From AOL:

Some residents are complaining that micro-apartments crowd too many people together, aren’t compatible with some neighborhoods, don’t encourage people to put down roots, and circumvent a design review process meant to get public input.

The opponents are now pushing for a moratorium on building more of these units to give the city a chance to analyze the pros and cons and implement new regulations, if necessary. While the Seattle mayor isn’t eager to set a moratorium, the public and the council will be discussing the topic in next few weeks.

Readers, do you think DC needs to slow down and have a similar discussion before micro-units start appearing in our market?

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This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/a_backlash_against_micro-units_brews_in_seattle/7007

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