Accessory dwellings are rentable units inside another home, like a basement apartment or an upper floor with a separate entrance. These are common in DC, but illegal in Arlington. What’s Up Arlington reports an intiative underway to change this law.

I don’t know about Arlington’s motive specifically, but many suburban jurisdictions originally made them illegal to keep housing prices high and, intentionally or not, prevent poorer and minority people from living in their towns. With housing prices now so high for everyone, there’s political will to change the law. There’s a public meeting Monday to discuss the proposed changes.

David Alpert is Founder and President of Greater Greater Washington and Executive Director of DC Sustainable Transportation (DCST). He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He lives with his wife and two children in Dupont Circle. Unless otherwise noted, opinions in his GGWash posts are his and not the official views of GGWash or DCST.