Belmont pushes for affordable housing


Sares Regis

The Ashton is one of the new housing developments in Belmont.

As more people move to the Bay Area to find jobs, the push for affordable housing has found a foothold in Belmont.

According to Plan Bay Area 2040, the Bay Area has too little housing for too many people. The current imbalance between supply and demand is affecting the price and quantity of housing, leading to a rise in cost. 

“The housing never gets close to matching the number of people that are coming here to work,” said former Belmont mayor and city councilman George Metropulos. “It’s a combination of high demand and low stock.”

In 2018, multiple housing units were built in Belmont, and in Oct. 2019, the Belmont City Council approved more developments. 

Many support the push for affordable housing and look forward to the soon-to-be-built residences.

“I do think adding more housing will help, but I think we have to be mindful of the type of housing we’re adding. One thing that is of high priority to me is adding affordable housing,” said former Belmont mayor and current city councilman Charles Stone.

However, the push for new residences has met its share of obstacles, with many residents wanting Belmont to remain the way it is.

“Some of us just want to be sure that we still have the quaint town that we always loved so much,” Metropulos said. 

According to Up for Growth, new housing doesn’t overburden schools, strain city finances, or make traffic worse. Instead, building new units for more people will ultimately have a positive impact on the community.

Others don’t expect to see a change in pricing regarding housing costs but don’t oppose the new residences.

“I think housing markets are going to stabilize for the next two years or so,” said real estate agent Caroline Dinsmore. “We might be heading into a mild recession, but for a lot of people, it will still be very expensive.”