KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Less parking for cheaper rent. It’s an effort to address Kansas City’s affordable housing shortage.
On Thursday, the Kansas City, Mo. City Council unanimously passed an ordinance that will allow developers to provide one parking spot as long as 20 percent of the units in the building are “affordable.”
According to the city, those eligible for affordable housing units must make 70 percent of the area median income or less.
"Developers 'drop' [rents] down from $1,100 to $850, but who can afford $850?” Diane Charity said.
Charity is part of KC Tenants, a group advocating for safe and affordable housing.
She said in the last year she has seen her rent jump from $475 to $700.
“I'm not on Section 8, I don't get any vouchers," she said. "I have to come up with that every month. It's more than 60 percent of my income."
In the past, council members have suggested either a property or sales tax to help fund affordability programs. Another suggestion is requiring developments to have 15 percent of units deemed affordable if the project developer receives tax incentives from the city.
None of those suggestions have come to fruition.