The Austin City Council debates affordable housing rules in its proposed new land development code — focusing on measures that would increase the supply of affordable housing within the city’s limits. The goal is to add 100,000 housing units over the next decade through higher density development in so-called “transition districts” outside the city center. Areas transitioning to higher density are near roads and transportation hubs, a requirement that is meant to position residents in areas that ease the burden in transportation costs.
The current affordable housing rules within the proposed code allows for up to seven units on a single lot without triggering the requirement for affordable housing among those units. Council member Kathy Tovo says that seven units is too many while Mayor Pro Tem Delia Garza says a more restrictive code will result in the opposite of the desired effect, making it too difficult for developers to bring more units to the city as its population grows.
“We can say all day in the code you have to put two units, but if at the end of the day, nobody can do that, then we just did it for the principal of saying we required affordable housing on this,” Garza said.
Tovo’s amendment was tabled. The Council will reconvene Wednesday, December 11th.