Opinion

Poll: Should Alexandria eliminate parking requirements for auxiliary housing units?

Auxiliary housing hasn’t taken off like the City of Alexandria hoped, but city staff are hopeful loosening some restrictions — including parking — could kick the housing type into gear.

The goal is to provide a boost to market-rate affordable housing which has been in freefall in Alexandria for years. While auxiliary housing hasn’t been as widespread as city officials might have hoped, a staff report prepared for an upcoming Planning Commission indicated that city staff are hopeful that eliminating parking requirements for auxiliary housing in “enhanced transit areas” could incentivize more commercial property owners to add residential units.

According to a map in that report, “enhanced transit areas” cover nearly all of the city except some of the more residential areas in central Alexandria like Seminary Hill and Rosemont.

Another big change being considered is an increase to the price of on-street, pay-by-phone parking, but “should parking be more expensive” tends to be a lopsided poll.