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Tucson considers making room for more casitas

Wednesday, May 26, 2021   /   by Adam Donaldson-Moxley

Tucson considers making room for more casitas

Article originally posted on tucson.com on May 26th, 2021

Calling it an effort to provide more affordable housing, Tucson is considering amending the city code to allow accessory dwelling units, casita-like structures where people can live.

Amending the city’s development code to authorize the dwellings called ADUs for residential use is also part of the city’s push to support multigenerational living options and promote infill development.

The smaller units are add-ons to main residences with their own kitchens and restrooms and are typically under 1,000 square feet. Tucson’s code currently states accessory structures to residences cannot serve as dwelling units.

City staff’s currently proposed regulations include putting the maximum size of the units at 1,000 square feet, allowing one ADU per a residential lot and requiring one parking space per ADU.

With the option to rent ADUs to ones’ parents or grandparents, the units can also provide more flexible housing options for seniors, allowing them to stay close to family or caregivers as they age.

However, Rogers doesn’t see ADUs driving down the increasing cost of housing in Tucson on a large scale. “I don’t think, at the heart of things, this is going to have much impact on the overall cost of housing. We’re probably not going to have thousands of these,” he said. “The reality is this is going to be a good thing for the people who have the ability to do it based on city requirements. For those that can do it, it will provide some reduced housing costs.”

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