In 2008, the city of Mountlake Terrace passed a housing choices ordinance which allowed for alternatives to typical single family residential development. The ordinance (and associated code changes) created a 4800 Overlay District which allows many single family parcels surrounding the Town Center zoned area to be combined and subdivided to create smaller lots. The ordinance also allowed for cottage housing, which is generally defined as a grouping of small, single family dwelling units clustered around a common area and developed with a coherent plan for the entire site. Here is a little more about cottage housing from the MRSC:
The cottage units may have other shared amenities. The shared common area and coordinated design may allow densities that are somewhat higher than typical in single family neighborhoods while minimizing impacts on adjacent residential areas. As a result, cottage housing can offer its owners a quality living experience that is less expensive than traditional single family housing. It also offers a degree of privacy and some of the benefits of single family housing combined with the lower cost and maintenance of attached housing. The clustered arrangement can contribute to a sense of community.
Until now, no one has taken advantage of these two forms of development. The City's first cottage housing development is now under construction on 52nd Ave W.
The development consists of nine cottage homes that range in size from 977 square feet to 1,577 square feet and all have 3 bedrooms. Two separate garage buildings will accommodate common parking. One garage hosts a 1,000 square foot, 3-bedroom carriage house above.
The development will have a single driveway off 52nd Ave W that will have access to the two garage buildings as well as 6 paved parking spots. The cottages will be clustered around a common lawn area with an additional landscaped area along 52nd Ave W.