Tuesday, November 30, 2021
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GROWTH: Addressing affordable housing

| November 21, 2021 1:00 AM

Having attended a number of Post Falls Commission and Council hearings in 2021, my recollection differs from Mayor Jacobson’s on ‘multi family’ units. While the actual building permits issued for apartments may be, at this moment, “the same or lower,: the hearings that I recall include:

• Allowing 402 units then 270 units to be built in the Expo URD, designated to provide business attraction, not residential, of course this was in addition to 330 units and 150 plus recently built there.

• Changing 10 acres along Spokane River frontage to R-3 zoning. This plus numerous moves to R-M Designation which has been redefined to somehow be considered low density but allows far more units per acre than R-1. Post Falls has the smallest minimum R-1 at just 6,500 sf. yet the Commission and Council have made every effort to make smaller lots available, approving projects with 2,900 sf lots.

They have expressed great concern over “affordability” and imply that smaller lots make houses more affordable but there is nothing that requires a developer to provide lower prices. Approving smaller lots and R-3 zoning just drives up the cost of land as more units = more profit.

Let us hope the new Council can amend the Comprehensive Plan to slow the multi family/tiny lot onslaught. If affordability is an issue, let the City buy some land and establish some or ask the citizens for a bond issue to assist in providing affordable housing.

HOWARD BURNS

Post Falls