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Under-utilized MTS land could be used for affordable housing, report says

Posted: 1:23 PM, Apr 25, 2018
Updated: 2018-04-25 16:23:04-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Underused land owned by San Diego's Metropolitan Transit Service could help address the region's need for affordable housing — though not entirely.

That's according to a new report by the think-tank Circulate San Diego, which suggests nearly 60 acres of MTS-owned land, including parking lots and structures, could better serve the community as new homes.

"Empty and underutilized parking lots are a stark and visible demonstration of public lands being underutilized. However, there are substantial real estate assets MTS already considers available for development which are not parking lots," Circulate San Diego's report recommended.

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The report included a list of under-utilized locations the group suggests MTS consider, many of which have as little as 30 percent utilization.

In all, the report says the MTS land could lend itself to 8,000 new homes, 3,000 of which that could be reserved for affordable housing.

MTS officials are on board with the idea, though noted development of the lands could be an effective solution to future housing needs, but is not an end-all answer.

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"Transit-oriented development is kind of the way the whole city is going to grow," Rob Schupp, MTS communications director, told 10News. "So if we built on our 60 acres to the maximum, it's like 8,000 units.

"We can help, but we're certainly not the entire answer."

Circulate San Diego officials plan to hold a press conference in the coming weeks to officially announce their suggestions.