When I read articles describing Corvallis as “slow” in regards to adding more housing, my first reaction is “good for Corvallis” for being deliberate about growth. One reason many flock here is because they are enamored by the small town. There are many benefits of being a small town, and staying that way.

I feel sorry for people whose neighborhoods are affected by student housing and who now have no say in how their town develops, thanks to the Home Builders Association, which took away their right to have a voice by pushing Senate Bill 1573 through the Oregon Legislature. SB 1573 and three other bills were passed, with no citizen input, in order to address the “housing crisis.”

Let’s reframe that. We do not have a housing crisis (this is a marketing tool used by the housing and real estate industries), we have a population and affordability crisis. Building more houses will not solve the issues, any more than endless building in the San Francisco area did, where now you can buy a 1,000-square-foot house for half a million dollars.

The issue is that there are no controls on the real estate industry in terms of pricing or controls on how we parcel out housing. We had affordable housing in Corvallis, remember? Recall the many little houses torn down, the people evicted from their affordable apartments. The population and affordability issues combined with an attitude that making money at all costs to the rest of us are the problem.

Therese Waterhous

Albany (Feb. 8)

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