Accessory Dwelling Units- A New Standard?



Legislation introduced to allow accessory dwelling units (micro-housing) and to reduce the parking requirements for micro-housing.

Micro-housing exists in other large metropolitan areas including Seattle, New York, Washington, DC, San Francisco and Boston.

The text amendment would allow micro-housing as a permitted accessory use in the R-5 District. The unit must be 750 square feet or less. The total number of units on the property cannot exceed two including the accessory dwelling unit. Except in the case of home occupations, no accessory use shall be permitted or allowed for a commercial nature. Accessory dwelling units may not be subdivided from their lot.


  • To provide for additional housing options for residents desiring to live a simple lifestyle.
  • To encourage another form of walkable urbanism which is healthy for adults.
  • To attract millennials to the urban core by offering more affordable living.
  • To allow for a different housing option that appeals to adults with no children.
  • To provide for an affordable housing option that is attainable for Generation Y and aging Baby Boomers.

There are five reasons driving the interest in micro-housing

  1. Economics: There is a lower cost of living associated with micro-housing. The smaller the house the less likely you are to pay for building and insurance costs, taxes, and utilities, making micro-housing more affordable for recent college graduates, victims of financial crisis, or retirees.
  2. Demographics: It is estimated that 26% of American households consist of a single person living alone. Demographers believe that the trend will continue.
  3. Green Living: Many who aspire to the minimalistic lifestyle believe that living in micro-housing reduces their ecological footprint.
  4. Simpler Living: Many who have adopted the minimalistic lifestyle report living a happier life.
  5. Technology: Modern technology allows the luxury of not owning some personal goods and services and allows outsourcing of items through car services, music services, laundry services, food services, and chore services.


The Zoning Review Board (ZRB) is scheduled to hold a public hearing on April 13, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. in the City Council Chambers located at 55 Trinity Avenue, S.W. For more information contact Mary Darby at mdarby@atlantaga.gov or (404) 546-6724.

Ordinance- CM Hall -Accessory Dwelling Units in R5 zoning- 3-10-17.docx

Z-17-09 Fact Sheet