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Strong support for non-market housing
530 comments in support of False Creek North non-market housing
I wrote up a Reddit post yesterday morning on the False Creek North non-market housing that’s coming to a public hearing this afternoon. I wasn’t sure how much response it would get, but it turned out to be pretty massive - 530 people sent in brief comments of support, which is amazing. There’s now 533 comments in support, 41 opposed. All the comments, both in support and opposed, are linked from the agenda page.
As Matthew Yglesias notes, opposition to new housing is hyperlocal: it’s unpopular at the local level, but popular at the city-wide level. If it’s easy for city council to hear from people across the city, instead of just people who live right next door, they’ll get a very different picture.
The real issue is that the upsides to housing growth accrue across a city, a metro area, or even a state, while the nuisances of new construction (parking scarcity, traffic, aesthetic change) are incredibly local. So if you ask a very small area “do you want more housing or less?” a lot of people will say that they think the local harms exceed the local benefits, and the division will basically come down to aesthetic preference for more or less density. But if you ask a large area “do you want more housing or less?” the very same people with all the same values and ideas may come up with a different answer because they [get] a much larger share of the benefits.
Some interview clips included in this radio segment by Geri Mayer-Judson: