Amazon promises $2B for affordable housing projects near its corporate offices

Enlarge / Amazon is committing some cash to making sure people who don’t make six figures can afford to live anywhere near its new Crystal City (Arlington, Virginia) second headquarters. (credit: Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images)

Amazon is planning to spend $2 billion over the next five years to invest in affordable housing in the three cities where its major offices have helped jack up housing prices, the company said today.

The company will be using loans, lines of credit, and grants to “preserve and create” 20,000 committed affordable units for low- to moderate-income families in the general areas around Seattle, Nashville, and Arlington, Virginia, where it has a large corporate presence, Amazon said in a press release this morning.

“Affordable housing” is generally defined as priced to be within reach of families making 80 percent or less of the area median income. Amazon specifically is targeting households coming in between 30 and 80 percent of the area AMI. The AMI for the Washington, DC, metro area, including Arlington, is $126,000, and so basically any household making between $37,000 and $100,800 falls within that range. In Seattle, the AMI is $119,400, and so that window would include households making between approximately $35,800 and $95,500.

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January 9, 2021