Palo Alto considers subsidized housing for salary up to $250K

Workers walk a past row of fenced off houses in East Palo Alto, California December 16, 2015. REUTERS/Stephen Lam

(Reuters) - Palo Alto officials are considering providing subsidized housing for people earning up to $250,000, as rent and home prices soar in the Silicon Valley city.

The plan is a among a series of proposals being mulled by the Palo Alto City Council to provide affordable housing to those considered middle class in the area - families making between $150,000 to $250,000 annually.

The median household income in the U.S. in 2014 was about $52,000, according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics.

The proposals include building about 2,000 new units that would be made available for those earning less than $250,000, as well as the construction of tiny apartments known as micro units in the San Francisco Bay area city.

Palo Alto Vice Mayor Greg Scharff, who proposed the plan, told local broadcasters KPIX that housing prices are pushing out longtime residents as well as teachers, doctors, firefighters and government employees.

“What the council is proposing is that we work together to fund and subsidize, what is basically middle-class housing; which, traditionally, has not been subsidized,” Scharff said.

Reporting by Victoria Cavaliere; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore