These Micro-Units Aren’t Helping

As a response for the need to help the poor, I’m all for ‘micro-units’, which are essentially very small apartments, often with a communal space. Without the political will to build subsidized housing, we need something to replace what used to be called flophouses–though they should be more humane and safe (i.e., private bathrooms). But this project, designed for D.C.’s Blagden Alley is just stupid (boldface mine):

Proposed back in 2014, the two-building development would sit mostly along Blagden Alley and partly on 9th and M Streets NW. Approved by the Historic Preservation Review Board last year, the development aims to attract a high-earning, young professional demographic that is looking for shorter-term stays than a traditional year-long lease.

“We’re targeting a slightly higher-income, more upscale, sophisticated tenant than a typical micro-unit might be targeting,” Brook Katzen, formerly of SB-Urban, said in 2014. “Our demographic is single, urban professionals aged 25-35 earning $150,000-$200,000 a year. That income level is based on the fact that these units will be fully furnished, all utilities included.”

In a city with a severe housing shortage, we need permanent housing, whether it be rental or for purchase. Worse, what this building will become is a ‘during the week’ hotel for people who work in D.C., but who commute back to ‘home’ on the weekends. On the weekends, there will bea dead zone that no one uses, all the while taking up prime real estate, depriving the neighborhood of street life.

This isn’t the only such unit being built: right on Dupont Circle, there is another such ‘micro-unit’ building being constructed, though it might have a bar/restaurant, which could alleviate some of the dead zone concerns.

D.C. needs housing for middle-class people who intend to stay for the long-haul, not long-term hotels for the gentry class.

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5 Responses to These Micro-Units Aren’t Helping

  1. Rich says:

    Further proof that conservatism is dragging us back to the bad old days of 100 years ago when people lived this way. My mother called these “cold water flats” she lived in as a child in Jersey City in the early 20th century.
    It is imperative that these right-wing fucks are defeated. But, the Dems have never been up to the fight that would be required.
    We are well and truly fucked. I would not be surprised if Trump wins. There are too many electronic voting machines that cannot be audited. Even when they can be audited, as in Kansas, the State Attorney General succeeds in keeping the paper records secret even when there is credible evidence of irregularities. It is obvious they are hiding something. Where was the DNC with unlimited legal assistance to the Wichita State professor? Why was she left alone to go to court and get her ass kicked? You would think the DNC would have been all over this case and elevated it to national attention. They must have had a reason. Maybe they don’t want to expose the cheating since they might want to cheat themselves.
    This is what is so infuriating about Dems. They let shit like this go without a fight. Like Humphrey choosing not to go public with the news that Nixon sent one of his campaign flacks to sabotage the Paris peace talks in 1968.

  2. Ruthmarie Hicks says:

    The dems don’t want to fight because they are part of the problem. If you think the democrats care about those who can’t afford decent housing or fair voting, you haven’t been paying attention. They are owned by big business every bit as much as the republicans.

    I was helping with the Sanders campaign during the NY primary. Believe me, the election fraudometer was through the roof. And you know what? Without the vote rigging there was every chance Sanders would have would have WON that primary.

    • Rich says:

      I supported Sanders as well. For a long time I refused to vote for her due to support for Iraq war. Now I don’t know what to do.

  3. rijkswaanvijand says:

    “I’m all for ‘micro-units’”
    But still no mention of the exact measurements of your own dwelling ey?

    As someone that actually has to ‘live’ in a one-bedroom apartment, I say fuck em’, fuck the noise, fuck the smell of gasoline permeating from the central hall, fuck the moped- and car-fumes and/or barbecue-smoke continuously coming in through my only fucking window -which can’t be shut because the fucking ventilation system keeps sucking all the fucking air out of my fucking apartment and cannot be shut down.

    And fuck you too for promoting these fucking cells!

  4. rijkswaanvijand says:

    Oh, and fuck the fact that my fucking bedroom is my fucking livingroom is my fucking kitchen.

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