August 29, 2022.
Have you seen my signs in the medians with a sticker that reads: “Stop Missing Middle”? I am the only candidate for Arlington County Board on November 8 who opposes this insidious form of upzoning.
You may be wondering what Missing Middle is and why you should care? Missing Middle is a scheme to rezone Arlington’s residential neighborhoods for much higher density multi-family dwellings like apartments, town homes and duplexes.
So what’s wrong with that? Isn’t more housing needed and won’t a down payment on a condo be cheaper than financing a mortgage on a single family home?
The County argues that Missing Middle will add more housing options for those seeking to buy. What good is that if you don’t qualify for a mortgage?
The County’s own data indicate that an income of $108,000 per year will be needed for a 700 square foot efficiency or 1 bedroom condo costing $416,000 (p. 20, 24). Want 3 bedrooms? The County projects that the cheapest of those to be built will cost $1,149,000, which is far more than the house torn down to build it.
The County argues that Missing Middle will enable people of color to buy into previously redlined neighborhoods. Yet its own data indicate that only 39 percent of these households will qualify for low end Missing Middle housing (p.25). The remainder will likely opt for a spacious single family home in PG County with a much more affordable mortgage.
If you want to learn more about Missing Middle or are concerned about its impacts on your neighborhood, consider attending one of the following candidate forums. I plan to attend and present the case against Missing Middle:
- Arlington County Civic Federation Candidates’ Night, Tuesday, September 6, 7-9 p.m.
- Arlington Chamber of Commerce Candidate Forum, Wednesday, September 14, 5:30-7 p.m.
- Lyon Park & Ashton Heights Civic Associations’ Candidates’ Night, Wednesday, September 14, 7:15 p.m., 414 N. Fillmore St.
- Rosslyn-Fort Myer Rotary Club Meeting, September 20, 7:30 p.m.
If you want to join the fight against Missing Middle:
- Spread the word about my candidacy.
- Donate and/or volunteer.
- Pick up a “Clement for County Board” yard sign.
- Help make the “Arlington Way” more than an empty phrase.