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Wednesday, March 22, 2023
ArlingtonOpinionLetter: Time has come to implement Missing Middle strategy

Letter: Time has come to implement Missing Middle strategy

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Editor: The Arlington County government recently released its Missing Middle Draft Framework, based on nearly two years of formal community feedback. The proposal would benefit residents in three key ways.

• Missing Middle would make Arlington and the region more environmentally sustainable, while retaining standards for tree cover and runoff. Sprawling development has much greater ecological and climate impact. Blocking Missing Middle would fuel new sprawl, condemning swaths of trees and wildlife habitat. The status quo is an unsustainable future for Arlingtonians.

• Missing Middle would reduce upward pressure on housing prices. The median price for a new detached single-family home in Arlington is around $2 million. Multiplex units would be less expensive by using land more efficiently. Missing Middle would let more families live in neighborhoods rich with opportunities such as excellent public schools.

• Finally, more residents means more taxpayers and a stronger county budget. Moderately denser housing would require less physical infrastructure for residents, such as roads and utilities.


Arlingtonians have publicly discussed Missing Middle since at least 2016. To realize these benefits for its constituents, the County Board should approve Missing Middle without delay.

Luca Gattoni-Celli, Alexandria

Gattoni-Celli is founder of YIMBYs of Northern Virginia.

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