What are some of the zoning reforms we support?
The path to creating more housing—of all types—is complex. One track we can start with is zoning and land use reform. While zoning largely started out as a way to separate incompatible and noxious land uses, it was quickly manipulated into a form of nefarious and discriminatory socio-spatial stratification. Now it’s time to rectify the persisting legacy of zoning regulations.
Here are a few basic proposals that would help increase housing and access to housing throughout Columbus and Central Ohio:
- Allow four-plexes by-right throughout the city. This would mean that a residential structure of up to four units would be allowed without a variance anywhere.
- Eliminate outdated parking minimums that increase the cost of housing
- Re-examine height restrictions, especially along transit corridors
- Permit accessory dwelling units (ADUs) for long-term housing throughout the city
- Prioritize/expedite approval process for projects that increase housing stock (as opposed to projects removing housing units) and/or offer affordable housing
- When demolishing or significantly renovating residential structures, require the replacement of at least the same number of housing units
- Create clear and expedited permit pathways for innovative housing options like co-living, cooperative residences, and tiny homes
- Include requirements or incentives (like density bonuses) for sustainability measures like permeable pavement and tree plantings
- Diversify housing voices and consider the housing needs of future residents, not only current homeowners
- Consider thoughtful policy links between employer tax incentives and the creation of new housing