Counties Urge for Expanded Definition of Adaptive Reuse

On February 7, 2023, Associate Policy Director Dominic Butchko testified before the House Environment and Transportation Committee in support of HB 0150 – Housing and Community Development – Adaptive Reuse.

The bill’s cross-file, SB 0166, was considered by the Senate Education, Energy, and the Environment Committee, also on February 7.

HB 0150 principally expands the definition of adaptive reuse to include any project that converts existing buildings into new dwellings. If codified in law, this broader classification of those buildings eligible for financial assistance from the Department of Housing and Community Development would enable the creation of more affordable housing units at a moment in which there is a critical need.

From the MACo Testimony:

HB 150 is a prime example of a nimble and adaptive policy solution. Both the adoption of a broad definition of adaptive reuse and the expansion eligibility for certain loans represent simple changes in policy that can have a significant impact. As the economy changes following the pandemic, many urban areas are plighted by wasted office space. In many former industrial centers, old factories and warehouses sit empty. The expansion of adaptive reuse allows for the creation of more affordable housing. From making downtown areas more resident-friendly, to reimagining former industrial sites, and everything in between – the recognition and advancement of adaptive reuse offers a path for many communities to reinvent themselves while also spurring the growth of badly needed affordable housing stock.

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