The cheery Oct. 30 Metro article "Making room for more," about an Arlington County proposal to allow homeowners to construct "accessory dwelling" units on their property, read as if grandma would be moving into a tiny ivy-covered cottage in the back garden.
Not so. Nor is the goal of the proposal, as Arlington County Board Chairman Jay Fisette (D) claimed, removing "unnecessary, administratively burdensome barriers."
Instead, it would allow, for the first time, unlimited construction of separate dwellings of up to 750 square feet , 25 feet high, eight feet from the main house and a mere one foot from lot lines, some on lots not even 50 feet wide. Up to three unrelated people could live in the unit. Think of three loud fraternity brothers living one foot away in a building that looms over your small back yard. That's what this proposal would allow.
Barbara E. Taylor, Arlington
We are destroying permeable land and trees in Arlington at an unprecedented rate. Allowing additional structures on already-small lots would cause more runoff problems. Such changes would also be a stress to neighboring properties and their trees. These new dwellings would not be "affordable" either, considering the cost of construction and the market rental rates.
Margie Bell, Arlington