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Unlocking the Potential of Missing Middle Housing

Cover image of Unlocking the Potential of Missing Middle Housing brief


Read the full paper here.



David Garcia, Policy Director

Muhammad Alameldin, Policy Associate

Ben Metcalf, Managing Director

William Fulton, Terner Fellow


Despite recent zoning reform successes, regulatory, financing, and construction barriers still pose challenges to making missing middle housing, with its benefits for affordability and sustainability, a more widespread form of housing development. This brief examines the barriers that developers of missing middle housing are facing. The brief examines the history of missing middle housing as well as why facilitating this type of development has benefits. The brief then shares findings from two roundtable conversations we hosted in March of 2022 with missing middle developers from throughout California, as well as from places around the country such as Portland, Oregon, Minneapolis, Minnesota, Boston, Massachusetts, South Bend, Indiana, as well as Texas and Oklahoma. These developers specialize in small-scale development, ranging from ADUs and duplexes up to twelve-unit multifamily projects.


Cottage cluster proejct photo courtesy of Brian Foulkes.

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