St. Paul to Consider Upzoning for the “Missing Middle”
St. Paul To Consider ‘Missing Middle’ Upzoning
St. Paul, Minnesota is considering changes to the city’s zoning laws in order to permit duplexes and other multi-family housing types to be constructed in single-family neighbourhoods. The city is facing an affordability crisis, with a shortage of approximately 80,000 housing units. Currently, 72% of residentially zoned land in the city is zoned for single-family homes, and one-third of the city’s housing stock is made up of large apartment buildings. Zoning reforms are recommended by the city’s “1-to-4 Unit Infill Zoning Housing Study”, which aims to increase housing affordability and provide more housing options. Advocates say the proposed changes are a step in the right direction.
To address an affordability crisis, St. Paul is considering modifying its zoning rules to allow for duplexes and other multifamily homes in single-family neighborhoods.
The proposed changes aim to increase the housing supply in a city that lacks about 80,000 housing units, according to an article in the Pioneer Press by Frederick Melo. At present, over 70% of residentially zoned land in St. Paul is reserved for single-family homes, while one-third of the city’s housing stock is made up of large apartment buildings. The missing middle housing type is not represented, and its construction could help boost available units while protecting neighborhood integrity and preserving local infrastructure. Duplexes, triplexes, and fourplexes comprise just 11% of St. Paul housing. “From 2000 to 2017, the number of duplexes decreased by 17%, and triplexes and fourplexes decreased by 11%.”
The city’s “1-to-4 Unit Infill Zoning Housing Study” recommends zoning reforms to make housing more affordable and provide more options for St. Paul residents. As outlined by Melo, these reforms include consolidating zoning districts, creating a special density bonus for workforce housing, changing lot size requirements, and establishing new development regulations near transit stations.
Housing advocates support these changes, calling them a positive first step. Isaac Russell, a policy director with the Center for Economic Inclusion, notes that the zoning proposal is necessary to address the homeownership gap between white and Black residents and represents an important rethinking of how to build a city moving forward.
1- melk360.com ,St. Paul To Consider ‘Missing Middle’ Upzoning ,2023-04-17 13:00:00