A statewide civil rights and housing advocacy group is set to file a lawsuit against the Town of Woodbridge and its planning and zoning commission Tuesday, alleging that the local zoning code “unjustifiably restricts” multifamily housing, limiting choices for low-income families, the group told CT Insider.
The lawsuit by the Hartford-based Open Communities Alliance claims Woodbridge’s zoning regulations violate the Connecticut Fair Housing Act, the state’s new zoning reform law and the state constitution. It asks a judge to bar certain elements of the town’s zoning code and require new policies to promote affordable housing.
The lawsuit reignites a fight over affordable housing in Woodbridge that began nearly two years ago, when the alliance — with an application for a multi-family development in hand — led a march to town hall demanding the town overhaul its zoning laws. Officials in the overwhelmingly white, wealthy town rejected significant reforms, leaving a zoning code that blocks multifamily housing on more than 98 percent of its land.
Open Communities Alliance and its allies hope a favorable ruling will not only lead to more affordable housing in Woodbridge but also spur similar action in other towns.
Civil rights group sues Woodbridge, says town ‘unjustifiably restricts’ multifamily housing, Alex Putterman, CT Insider, Aug. 30, 2022, available here