Sunday, December 3, 2006

Return of the Granny Flat

From the NYT:

... [Northeastern] towns in need of inexpensive housing are turning to garage apartments, mother-in-law units and cottages in the backyard. The aim is to enable people who would otherwise be priced out of the housing market to live close to their jobs and relatives.
For a lot of people this makes more sense than living in an apartment complex, and it's a fairly painless way to add housing in existing neighborhoods. This is something the LDO citizens' advisory team definitely needs to look at for Greensboro.


Anonymous said...

College Hill already has numerous houses with granny apartments, garage apartments, and houses that have been broken up into apartments....unfortunately for GSO and College Hill, there are many (not all--but many) slum lords that have allowed this neighborhood to degenerate into a virtual termite heaven-or worse yet--scary fire hazard--that is still assured of occupancy due to the proximity of the colleges. Students will live in these places because of location and price(sadly--I wouldn't let my dog spend the night in some of these places)...but, professionals will have a hard time finding places to rent close to downtown where the cost won't eat up their paychecks.

Personally, I think the only thing that is going to force Greensboro to clean it's act up is going to be the day when the FedEx employees start moving in. FedEx changed Memphis--and this great influx of people will change Greensboro--and force the little lords of their personal fifedoms to improve--or sell. I can't wait.

David Wharton said...

Enforcement of the minimum housing standards code is a problem in Greensboro (and a lot of places), but I don't think that's due to the zoning which allows such apartments.

In my neighborhood, some of the landlords do a very good job of maintaining those multi-unit houses, and some done.

And some owners of single-family houses also don't do a good job, either.

Anonymous said...

I don't believe that I have ever seen such a run down "Historic District," in NC or any other state I have lived in. If you can think of one, please do post it here--I would particularly love to see one next to a major university, and small private religious college, or a downtown that is not economically devastated. (I thought of parts of Cambridge circa. "Love Story" but I still don't think it was this bad)

I don't believe it's a problem with zoning either....however, I DO believe that there is an inherent problem in Greensboro that allows slum lords to flourish and to somehow get around the minimum housing codes. The Agapian houses that were recently torn down (2 months ago?) were the first court ordered tear-down in the history of Greensboro. Hopefully, there will be many more---although, it could change the landscape of College Hill.