Zoning Reform Gains Momentum in Northern Virginia

Arlington County and Alexandria are moving forward with actions that could potentially launch a new era of planning and development in their respective communities.

May 27, 2022, 5:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Arlington County, Virginia

Commercial density in Crystal City in Arlington County, Virginia. | Frontpage / Shutterstock

“Arlington and Alexandria are taking a hard look at single-family zoning” as housing prices rise in Northern Virginia, according to an article by Luca Gattoni-Celli for Greater Greater Washington.

In Arlington County, planners are building on the Missing Middle Housing Study (previous Planetizen coverage), “policy staff recently unveiled a proposal to permit multiplex housing with up to eight units in all single-family zones.,” reports Gattoni-Celli. “The County Board could adopt this new scheme by the fall.”

In Alexandria, “the City Council’s official 2022 budget and policy priorities include, ‘Provide Diverse Housing Opportunities,’ starting with reconsidering zoning,” adds Gattoni-Celli.

Deeper analysis of Arlington County’s framework for Missing Middle Housing and Alexandria’s history of using zoning to achieve exclusionary and discriminatory ends are included in the source article below.

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