To the Editor:

Bob Stewart brings integrity, good judgment, and courage to Edina’s City Council. He’s faced the challenges of governing and is knowledgeable about a broad range of issues: transportation, economic development, long-range planning, and affordable housing.

As coordinator of Edina Neighbors for Affordable Housing, I’ve been gratified by his courageous and judicious approach to this issue, and by his eagerness to learn the complex financial and design aspects of creating affordable housing that works for Edina. Bob’s business background also makes him acutely aware of the need for workforce housing and its impact on Edina’s economic growth.

Bob recognizes that Edina’s affordable housing must reflect a broad spectrum of need among its businesses and residents. The largest resident groups are millennials (our children’s generation) and the elderly who want to downsize and remain in this community but find little that’s affordable here. These groups, often living alone, comprise 40 percent of Twin Cities households and are expected to comprise 75-85 percent by 2025. They want smaller units in walkable neighborhoods – while the market dictates building large million dollar homes and luxury high-rise apartments. It’s a tough challenge.

Bob understands that residents of this city want more affordable housing choices. That the city must create a broad range of models – from cottage bungalows, to single- and extended-family homes, and both low-rise and higher multifamily buildings. Bob supports a balance of ownership and rental affordable housing that is compatible with the character of our neighborhoods, and integrated within them.

Bob strongly supports the city’s race and equity goals as reflected throughout its affordable housing effort. To that end, he advocates close collaboration with our school district, local nonprofits, and our business community.

Finally, in this age of fear, anger, and negativity, Bob brings an open mind, excellent listening skills, and a positive can-do attitude. That is the Edina spirit. Re-elect Bob Stewart to our city council.

L. Hope Melton

Edina

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