Zoning changes encourage home development

Bloomington has a long history of advancing housing options for people of all incomes. In 1974, the City substantially reduced residential minimum zoning standards for lot size, lot width, floor area, and front and side setbacks. The changes lowered the cost of development and increased housing affordability.

Bloomington continues to look for ways to promote housing affordability. In 2019, the City adopted the Opportunity Housing Ordinance, which provides significant zoning incentives for owners who include affordable housing in their developments. 

Today, as a built-out city, Bloomington experiences much more multifamily redevelopment than single-family construction. The Opportunity Housing approach allows for considerable flexibility on zoning standards in exchange for providing affordable housing. 

Several multifamily projects have taken advantage of Bloomington’s innovative approach over the last year. Nearly 1,500 units have been completed or are under construction in 2020, including 298 new affordable units. Another 846 units have received zoning approvals and are anticipated in the near future. Of those, 272 will be affordable.

For more information on the opportunity housing ordinance, visit blm.mn/housing or call 952-563-8937.