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Microsoft pledges $500 million for Seattle-area affordable housing

Microsoft pledges $500 million for Seattle-area affordable housing

Microsoft announced Wednesday that it will pledge $500 million to help address the Seattle metro area's affordable housing crunch.

The New York Times reported that the Seattle-based company plans to invest the money in the area, which is home to Microsoft and Amazon and that has faced rapidly rising housing prices and diminishing supply.

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“We are going to invest quite a bit,” Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella told the Times. “Of course, we have lots of software engineers, but the reality is that a lot of people work for Microsoft. Cafeteria workers, shuttle drivers.”

He added that there are currently not enough affordable housing units for Microsoft employees and others in the booming tech sector within Seattle and the surrounding area.

“As a sector, we are starting to step up, but have a lot more room to do so,” said Microsoft president Brad Smith.

A government report published in December from King County, which is home to Seattle, showed that the region needs an additional 156,000 affordable housing units. The area will need 88,000 more units by 2040 to accommodate future growth, according to the report.