One Question

One Question: If aPodments are So Scuzzy...

Why hasn't there been a single code violation complaint?

By Josh Feit October 8, 2014

One Question

The push from neighborhood groups to regulate microhousing (or aPodments, as the William Gibson-style mini apartments are known) was ostensibly based on the idea that the cramped quarters were unhealthy and unsafe. 

The new regulations mandated a 220-square-foot minimum size for aPodments, along with mandates for two sinks per unit and increased square footage requirements for the common space; aPodments, which have their own bathroom and kitchenette, are a bit like dorms, with a common kitchen and social room. 

After a year of debate over the issue, in which happy aPodment residents cited the need for cheap and efficient housing, neighbors' objections to how other people were living carried the day

As a post mortem reality check, today's One Question goes to the city's Department of Planning and Development: Was there any record of code violation complaints from aPodment tenants?

Out of the 782 microhousing rooms that exist in all of Seattle's microhousing developments, DPD spokesman Bryan Stevens says there have been zero housing standard code violations. 

Some context: Out of the 147,148 rental units in all of Seattle's apartment buildings (51.9 percent of the city's housing stock) there have been 1,645 housing standard violations since 2009. 

The bulk of violations are for: lack of appropriate heating, no electricity, and no running water. 

One footnote: Microhousing is new, so it's not as likely that there would be housing standard violations yet. 

Casey Jaywork contributed to this report. 


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