I just did a cool thing with Mayor McGinn. We sat around the table in the Norman B. Rice Conference Room and thanked the City staff, architects, builders and other advocates who helped shape the changes to the low-rise portion of the Multi-Family Code. This was the big, complex re-write of the rules for low-scale apartments, town homes and row houses. We passed the bill at the end of last year after more than a year of reworking and rewriting in committee. That sounds wonky – and it is – but it should result in vastly better development in our neighborhoods; development that is people-centered, rather than car-centered, and more sustainably built than in the past.
Often after we finish with legislation we pick up and move on to the next package. We don’t note the work behind the scenes. That’s a shame. As he was signing the bill in December Mayor McGinn called me and said he regretted not doing a full ceremonial bill signing in order to thank people. So, instead we invited people in for a thank you meeting. We went around the room and each person described their role in making the legislation happen. The individual stories said a lot about people’s hard work, their creativity and their dedication to making development work well for neighborhoods.