Micro housing spreading to other Seattle neighborhoods

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by AMY MORENO / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on December 26, 2013 at 11:57 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 27 at 1:06 PM

SEATTLE -- Small apartments have been popping up in Seattle’s urban areas for the last few years.  The city refers to these small living spaces as "micro housing."  

 
The units are usually between 100 and just under 300 square feet. They're often used by students or young professionals who wouldn't be able to afford a traditional apartment in a neighborhood like Capitol Hill or the University District.  Now, some are surprised to see them being built in communities like West Seattle.  
 
People just started moving into a development on Delridge Way SW in west Seattle. Cassandra Goodwin is one of those new tenants.
 
“You wouldn't expect this kind of house to be in this kind of neighborhood,” said Goodwin
 
Goodwin says the location works for her because she goes to school nearby.  
 
“You just pay your month-to-month and your deposit and it's convenient,” she explained.
 
The two buildings on that site house 16 units and sit between a row of houses.  Neighbors like Norah Currie say they're already seeing an impact.
 
“I can't even park in front of my own house,” said Currie.
 
It's a similar concern to those raised in other parts of the city; but with no grocery store for a few miles and hardly any businesses nearby she believes many who live here will need a car.
 
“It's frustrating for people with houses if you can't park in your driveway or in front of your house,” said Currie.  
 
There is reliable bus service on Delridge but more cuts to Metro service could leave people stranded. The city has been studying micro housing and there has been talk of a moratorium but for now the building continues even in some unlikely neighborhoods.
 
City staff have recommended some changes to define and regulate micro-housing, but they say it's important to also preserve options like this that give people an affordable place to live.

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