2021 Affordable Housing Workgroup

The Williamsburg City Council made housing affordability a priority in its 2021-2022 Goals, Initiatives, and Outcomes, a document that outlines the City’s strategic objectives. 

To tackle this priority, City Manager Andrew O. Trivette formed a workgroup to consider housing initiatives that include defining affordable housing in Williamsburg, density rewards, and inclusionary housing. The group convened for meetings between February and October 2021. 

Workgroup Members

The Affordable Housing Workgroup comprised 15 members who were assisted by seven City staff members.
  • Shernita Bethea
    Hampton Roads Planning District Commission
  • Matthew Boyer
    William & Mary (Student)
  • Susan Gaston
    Williamsburg Area Association of Realtors
  • Diane Hartley
    Peninsula Agency on Aging
  • Leigh Houghland
    Chesapeake Bank
  • Sean Hughes
    William & Mary (Admin)
  • Rick Overy
    Economic Development Authority
  • Vaughn Poller
    James City County
  • Barbara Ramsey
    City Council
  • Caleb Rogers
    City Council
  • Carol Sale
    Williamsburg Health Foundation
  • Justin Shawler
    Planning Commission
  • Sarah Stafford
    William & Mary (Faculty)
  • William Turner
    Wells Fargo
  • Abbitt Woodall
    York County

Stafford Studies

Early on, the workgroup contracted Dr. Sarah Stafford, a William & Mary professor of economics and public policy, for an updated Affordable Housing Analysis to project the number of housing units that may be needed by 2040 to accommodate population growth in the area.

Other Plans

Between March and June, the group reviewed affordable housing plans from Fairfax County, Charlottesville, and Alexandria, as well as 10 suggestions from the Neighborhood Balance Committee, a former City workgroup that focused on neighborhood stability issues.

Following this review, the number of possible initiatives grew to 80. The Affordable Housing Workgroup and City staff winnowed this extensive list down to 13. From June to October, the workgroup ranked these 13 concepts in order of preference for short- and long-term implementation.

Affordable Housing Report

In November 2021, City Manager Andrew O. Trivette presented the Affordable Housing Workgroup's final report to City Council. This report outlined five of the workgroup's top-ranked concepts:

  1. Hotel to Affordable Housing Conversion
  2. Redevelopment of the Triangle and Blayton Buildings
  3. Workforce Housing at Waller Mill
  4. Mixed-Income/Mixed-Use Design Requirement
  5. Community Development Block Fund Rehabilitation Grants

See the full report: