Amazon commits $125M for affordable housing near DC Metro stations

Amazon commits $125M for affordable housing near DC Metro stations
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Amazon announced Wednesday it would allocate $125 million to develop 1,000 new affordable housing units in the Washington, D.C., metro area. 

The initiative is a partnership with the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, which aims to address the affordable housing crisis in the nation's capital. Amazon said the units will be built on property owned by the transit organization, emphasizing that the developments will provide greater access to public transportation.

Out of the $125 million slated for developers, Amazon said that $25 million will be directed toward minority-owned developers.

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Amazon also announced similar initiatives in Puget Sound in Washington state and in Nashville, Tenn. Overall, the e-commerce giant said it was committing $300 million to 3,000 new affordable housing units with the goal of having them ready for people to move in as early as 2025.

"Transit-oriented development has a proud legacy at Metro, and with this investment from Amazon we can continue to help the region tackle the challenges of housing affordability, congestion, and sustainability," Metro general manager and CEO Paul J. Wiedefeld said in the announcement.

The move comes amid concerns that Amazon HQ2 in Arlington, Va., has already raised rent prices around the area and threatens to displace residents who lived there before the company's move. 

According to a survey published by Tenants and Workers United and George Washington University in July 2019, the report noted that there was a 17 percent increase in housing prices around the area of the planned development since the company's HQ2 announcement.

The report also stated that about 10,000 residents in the predominantly Latino neighborhood of Arlandria, located about 2 miles from the HQ2 site, could possibly face displacement.