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LETTER: Affordable housing is not a partisan issue

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LETTER: A letterbox with the inscription Letter to the editor

The Apartment and Office Building Association (AOBA) of Metropolitan Washington, the region’s premier organization representing owners and managers of commercial and multifamily residential properties, is extremely disappointed by the statements made by Supervisor Pete Candland, prioritizing partisan political gain in favor of policies that stifle affordable housing and perpetuate segregated housing patterns. It is an unfortunate reality that our industry encounters such sentiments all too often. 

AOBA condemns Mr. Candland’s comments in the strongest manner possible. As a nation, and here too in Virginia, we have long moved away from and repudiated redlining, the use of exclusionary zoning and land-use policies that have the effect of maintaining or creating separate communities based on race, gender or other discriminatory grounds. 

A diversity of housing options is fundamental to the creation of a thriving community. Apartment communities are a critical part of that mix and essential to any economic development plan. Apartments serve as an environmentally-friendly, smart-growth compatible means of providing housing to residents at a wide range of income levels. 

Apartments are growing in popularity nationwide and, therefore, key in luring the type of revitalization and commercial investment that Prince William County is openly pursuing, competing with jurisdictions regionally and across the globe. 

Affordable housing is not a partisan issue but a human one. Unless we come together as a community to address the housing needs in the county and throughout the commonwealth, we will suffer the societal and economic consequences.

Bismah Ahmed

The Apartment and Office Building Association

Washington, D.C.

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(2) comments


Not to worry, there will be plenty of affordable housing if Ilhan Omar's bill is passed into law. All of the landlord's that can't collect rent due to COVID won't be able to pay the mortgages on their rented properties. Those properties will be foreclosed and forfeited the government. You can guess the rest.


Thank you for your insights into the need for diverse housing. Many residents of PWC agree with you as well as your condemnation of Supervisor Candland and the appearance of redlining.

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