City of Kirkland Receives 2020 Municipal Champion Award
Published on April 21, 2021
Award Recognizes Kirkland’s Commitment to Meeting Housing Needs
Interim Communications Program Manager
KIRKLAND, Wash. – Today, April 21, 2021, the City of Kirkland was presented the 2020 Municipal Champion Award at Housing Development Consortium of Seattle-King County’s 13th Annual Celebration. This award recognizes actions Kirkland has taken to increase “Missing Middle Housing” across the city. Founded in 1988 as one of the first of its kind in the country, the Housing Development Consortium supports its members as they work collaboratively to meet the housing needs of limited-income people throughout King County.
The City of Kirkland’s current missing middle/accessory dwelling unit rules were adopted in March 2020 as a result of a community process that spanned over a year. Current City codes allow for duplexes, triplexes and cottages on nearly all single-family lots in Kirkland, and two accessory dwelling units (ADUs) are allowed on one single-family property. Parking requirements and other regulatory barriers have been slashed or eliminated.
“Kirkland’s missing middle amendments are about using market forces to get more affordable housing stock out into the community,” said Kirkland Mayor Penny Sweet. “They’re one of the many tools the City uses to make housing more affordable in addition to transit-oriented development, multi-family property tax exemptions, and inclusionary zoning, among others.”
The code amendments have generated early results. The City has held pre-submittal meetings for 125 cottage units compared to only 8 in the year prior to the code changes, and ADU building permit submittals have more than doubled.
“We are proud of our community’s interest and enthusiasm for more compact housing types and Kirkland’s focus on housing choice and affordability,” said Mayor Sweet. “The City of Kirkland is committed to continue this work and the recently adopted City Work Program includes furthering attainable housing as one of our key action items.”
In addition to thanking the Housing Development Consortium for this honor, City of Kirkland thanks the Kirkland Association of Neighborhoods, Rose Hill and Bridle Trails Neighborhood Association members, Microsoft, members of the Housing Strategy Task Force, the Planning Commission, and the Kirkland community.
For more information about affordable housing and housing choices in Kirkland, visit https://www.kirklandwa.gov/Government/Departments/Planning-and-Building/Housing. A video of today’s event is available here, Kirkland’s award is presented at approximately 43 minutes in.
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