Urban Fold

Baltimore Officials Debate Inclusionary Zoning Proposals

The city's planning director, along with several other department heads, challenge a proposal from the city council to require developers to set aside affordable units.

"The leaders of some city agencies are pushing to significantly restrict legislation that would require developers to include affordable units in all Baltimore residential projects, but the City Council sponsors of the bill are sticking by their original plan."

"The bill -- formally introduced last night -- would require residential developers who get major subsidies or who benefit from significant rezoning to reserve as much as 20 percent of the units in a project for low- or moderate-income people. Developers working without subsidies or rezoning would have to offer 10 percent of their project for affordable use."

"Gary Cole, the Planning Department's acting director, said City Councilman Bernard C. 'Jack' Young's bill is simply not workable.

''What we saw was a bill that really did not speak to the issues of affordable housing, and we had some suggestions that would improve it. It's as simple as that,'' Cole said. ''I think what we want is we want a bill that's really going to help the citizens of Baltimore. Not something that's not doable.''"

Full Story: Housing proposal facing friction

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