EVERETT — Wednesday night the Everett City Council is expected to decide whether to prohibit supportive housing in single-family residential areas. A public hearing is scheduled before the vote.
At least two councilmembers have voiced concern about the recommendation by the planning commission, which if passed would halt a plan by the Everett School District and nonprofit developer Housing Hope for such a project in the Port Gardner neighborhood.
In 2016, councilmembers changed the city’s zoning code to allow supportive housing to be built in single-family areas on land owned by a public agency. Under the new code, there are four parcels that could be used for supportive housing.
The council placed a moratorium on supportive housing in single-family residential zones in June after a proposal to build low- to moderate-income apartments for homeless students was met with opposition from some neighbors.
Housing Hope’s preliminary plans for the project call for 34 to 50 low- to moderate-income apartments spread across several two-story buildings, each containing three to four units. Families experiencing homelessness with children at Sequoia High School would be given first priority, followed by homeless households with students in the school district.
Many neighbors felt blindsided by the proposal, which they said would increase traffic along a narrow street, eliminate green space, and not fit into the surrounding neighborhood.
Supporters argue that this housing is much needed for the 1,200 students experiencing homelessness in the district. And this project is being proposed in an area that has both single-family and multifamily housing.
The Housing Hope project has another path forward. The nonprofit developer has asked the city to upzone the site to allow multifamily buildings.
The meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. in the City Council chamber, 3002 Wetmore Ave.