In all the discussion about the city of Olympia’s move to revise residential housing restrictions, referred to as the Missing Middle, there’s one thing I haven’t heard anybody talk about: who is the Missing Middle?
The Missing Middle is your friends, perhaps the ones who aren’t as forthcoming about their financial difficulties as they might be. Who’d like to make Olympia home, but can’t find a place that they and their dog can afford in town. Or who can’t keep the house they’ve been in because they were laid off.
The Missing Middle is your neighbors, the neighbors who want to build a home to care for their aging parents rather than put them in a home. The neighbors who want to take in their nephew who’s really struggling to find a place that he can afford.
The Missing Middle is your peers, the parents and grandparents of the children that your children go to school with, the ones you stand awkwardly near at the bus stop, not quite sure how to start a conversation with, but whom you know on sight now, the ones you wave to and commiserate with at the school functions that never seem to end.
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The Missing Middle are people who want the same things that you want: safety, security, shelter. Who want to share this place that you love and appreciate: its incredible weather, the mystical beauty of its landscape and the financial prosperity of our state’s incredible capital.