I am gobsmacked by some of the recent submissions to the Eugene Weekly. Many of the people complaining about Eugene’s potential new middle housing code are so shortsighted that they cannot see beyond their own property lines or are swayed by the disinformation put out by a few bad faith actors.
Fact: 80 percent of Eugene’s residential land is currently zoned exclusively for single-detached houses (which tend to be the most expensive type of housing).
Fact: Much of Eugene’s housing code was drafted in a time when people of color were seen as undesirables and efforts were more openly made to exclude and segregate them.
Fact: Eugene’s unhoused population is dramatically increasing each year as people struggle to find any housing at all that they can afford. People of color continue to be overrepresented in this population.
It is ironic that some of the people complaining loudest about the code changes being considered are also the most up in arms about the increasing poverty seen in our streets and parks. They can’t have it both ways.
The Eugene Planning Commission has put untold hours into crafting a set of code changes that will make it easier and cheaper to build more and smaller housing, to say nothing of bringing us into compliance with state law. These changes are each well considered and will create more housing that young people like me can afford.
The Eugene City Council will soon take up these changes. I urge our councilors to pass them without delay.