Accessory dwelling units (ADUs) are an often overlooked and underutilized solution to the affordable housing shortage we face in New Jersey and across the Northeast. ADUs can be built on single-family lots as attached or detached homes by converting yard space, garages, basements, or attics. RPA’s July 2020 report, “Be My Neighbor,” outlined strategies to create more homes and emphasized how valuable they can be for seniors who want to age in place, families who’d like to earn extra income from their home, and anyone who cannot afford a single-family home.
RPA is bringing together elected officials from Maplewood, South Orange, and Princeton to explore the victories and opportunities for ADUs in New Jersey. Each community has made progress promoting diverse and inclusive housing and will talk about their experiences creating ADU-supportive policies. This conversation will cover the specific changes each community has made or is making; the motivations that prompted them to take action; how messaging around the issue evolved; and what lessons they have learned.
The panel will also address how this untapped housing can serve as a “missing middle” senior housing affordability initiative and as a Fair Share housing initiative. Plus, we’ll touch on the positive effects on public health, sustainability, and creating a more equitable economy. We hope you can join us for this critical conversation about these versatile small homes.
Dean Dafis, Deputy Mayor, Maplewood
Sheena Collum, Village President, South Orange and Executive Director, APA New Jersey
Mia Sacks, Councilwoman, Princeton Council and Member of the Planning Board, Princeton
Moderated by Courtenay Mercer, Principal, Mercer Planning Associates