Mayor Gray has set a goal of growing by 250,000 residents in 20 years. Previous mayors had similar goals. GMU studies suggest we need over 122,000 new housing units (each of which might hold multiple people) by 2030. How can and should the District accommodate this growth?
Matthew Frumin responded...
The theme of my campaign is "Let's grow together."
Our current growth is very exciting, but we must ensure that growth going forward benefits all of our communities and brings us together and does not work to divide us. That philosophy should be the compass point as we seek to meet the aggressive goals for growth in the coming decades.
To accommodate that growth we should:
- Follow through on the efforts to develop major projects like Walter Reed, St. Elizabeths, MacMillan Reservoir, the Southwest Waterfront and The Yards.
- Encourage mixed use developments in our commercial corridors and near Metro, streetcar and bus lines to concentrate new residents in places where they can be the least dependent on cars.
- Support efforts to create innovative and smaller dwelling units, as is being done in other jurisdictions, particularly on currently unused land.
- Facilitate the process through which homeowners may create limited and supervised accessory dwelling units.
We once had a population over 800,000, so the current goal is achievable. When we get there, however, we need to be certain that we have preserved and strengthened our greatest asset — the diversity and beauty of our wonderful neighborhoods. To do that we must make an unshakeable commitment to strengthening our stock of affordable housing and making housing affordable to our workforce.
Meeting our goal will also require much more than simply building the necessary housing stock. We must also invest significantly in our infrastructure. Once again, as an example, our schools become a key factor. We have many new residents, but if we want them to stay we must strengthen our schools.
On the Council, I will continue, as I have as an ANC commissioner, to work to support strategies for smart growth and affordable housing. I will also continue to work to promote investments in schools, parks and transportation infrastructure that can make our city increasingly attractive to potential and existing residents. In 20 years, let's be a city that is seen as the place to be for new young residents and for seniors.
Let's grow together.
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