Falls Church’s Economic Development Authority, an influential semi-autonomous body tasked with advancing the cause of economic development in the Little City, voted unanimously at its monthly meeting Tuesday night to participate in the City’s dialogue over plans to improve its affordable housing stock and to submit a letter to the F.C. City Council urging the formation of an ad hoc committee on affordable housing.
“There is urgency to this issue as the current trends are moving in the wrong direction,” a draft letter from the EDA board approved Tuesday states. “In order to develop a comprehensive approach, the EDA is recommending the establishment, by the City Council, of an Ad Hoc Committee featuring all the City’s interested public and private parties, civic organizations, faith-based groups, and more that would come together to tackle this issue and outline a variety of possible solutions,” it added.
A sentence was added to the letter at the meeting stating the EDA’s view that affordable housing solutions are not undertaken at the expense of on-going market-based economic development issues.
But it recognizes that “housing and economic development issues are intertwined in many ways, including but not limited to the benefits of a diverse population, including diverse economic backgrounds, the impact on hiring and retaining employees, and the impacts on community, education, transportation and the quality of life for residents, business owners and employees of City businesses. The increasing regional costs of living impact residents and therefore affect businesses and business opportunities. The recent, and forecasted, decline in market affordable housing in the City impacts the entire community.”