Commerce awards additional $685,000 to jurisdictions planning for more middle housing options

The second round of middle housing grants supports communities creating a greater variety of housing types to respond to housing needs at all income levels 

OLYMPIA, WA – The Department of Commerce today announced an additional $685,000 in grants for 14 jurisdictions to support the adoption of local comprehensive plan policies and zoning codes to allow more middle housing in residential neighborhoods. These awards follow the first funding round that provided nearly $3 million in grants to 54 jurisdictions statewide.

“Middle housing and accessory dwelling units are key to meeting Washington’s growing housing needs,” said Commerce Director Mike Fong. “With a demand for a million new homes over the next 20 years, Commerce grants and technical support help provide a more diverse and affordable housing base for Washington communities.”

Middle Housing Grant awards

  • Cowlitz County
    • Woodland – $50,000
  • Island County
    • Coupeville – $35,000
    • Oak Harbor – $50,000
  • Jefferson County – $50,000
  • King County
    • Hunts Point – $35,000
    • North Bend – $50,000
  • Kitsap County
    • Bremerton – $75,000
  • Klickitat County
    • Bingen – $35,000
    • White Salmon – $35,000
  • Pierce County
    • DuPont – $50,000
  • Snohomish County
    • Edmonds – $75,000
    • Woodway – $35,000
  • Whitman County
    • Pullman – $75,000
  • Yakima County
    • Zillah – $35,000

Washington state law defines “middle housing” as buildings that are compatible in scale, form, and character with single-family houses and contain two or more attached, stacked, or clustered homes. They may include duplexes, fourplexes, townhouses, courtyard apartments, cottage housing or other configurations — the same types of housing that exist in many older neighborhoods.

HB 1110 (Chapter 332, Laws of 2023), enacted in the 2023 legislative session, requires 77 communities to revise their zoning codes to allow middle housing buildings of two to six units per lot in residential neighborhoods. This is in addition to the statewide requirement to allow two accessory dwelling units (ADUs) per lot within designated urban growth areas. Commerce recently released model ordinances and guidance to assist jurisdictions in implementing middle housing requirements.

“Access to more housing types in all of our communities is essential to address the shortage that continues to drive up home prices and rents, threatening the potential for homeownership and financial security for many Washingtonians,” said Dave Andersen, managing director of Growth Management Services at Commerce. “These grants will help local governments to allow the types of development that were common last century, with smaller, multi-unit housing options that are more affordable in residential neighborhoods.

The communities receiving second-round Middle Housing Grants are of diverse size, geography and need, including communities not required to plan for middle housing and that are choosing to do so.

Supporting more affordable housing throughout Washington

Commerce provides funding to communities to help cover the upfront cost of connecting affordable housing projects to municipal systems. The Connecting Housing to Infrastructure Program (CHIP) offers competitive grants to help affordable housing projects pay for water, sewer and stormwater infrastructure, and to help local governments reduce the per-unit connection fees for these types of projects. Since 2021, CHIP investments have helped to create more than 7,800 affordable housing units.

In addition to supporting the work of communities to plan for and accommodate housing affordable to all economic segments, Commerce administers the state Housing Trust Fund, a key source of funding for developing and maintaining housing serving low-income and vulnerable populations. Since 1986, the Housing Trust Fund has invested over $2 billion in capital funding and helped build or preserve nearly 60,000 affordable housing units statewide.


Contact: Amelia Lamb, Commerce Communications, (360) 995-3386

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