Mike Ross Loves Mission Hill, Hates Unethical Landlords

1199376288Boston City Councilor Mike Ross loves Mission Hill. While the rest of the city may view the neighborhood as a student ghetto, the 36-year-old Ross calls it home. But that doesn’t mean he’s happy with the conditions in his neighborhood. Earlier this week, Councilor Ross announced his proposal to cap the number of students in one apartment to a maximum of four.

Ross assured Boston Daily that he’s not out to get students, and that many of the part-time residents have actually asked for help to improve their living conditions. Calling building owners who rent exclusively to college students, “a cabal of student-only landlords,” he wants to limit the amount of money landlords can charge the inexperienced renters, not keep students from living off-campus.

“It’s an economic justice issue,” he said. “Students complain to me, and ask why they live in substandard housing and pay out the nose to do so. For too many years, Boston has allowed this to continue.”

While he has been known to call the police on loud parties in his neighborhood, and has even gone with Boston police to watch them break up gatherings in the early hours of the morning, Ross isn’t unsympathetic to the students.

“Some of the kids know who I was, some didn’t. I didn’t care—I’m there to assess the situation, not send a message.”

The message to student-only landlords, however, is clear. It’s time to make neighborhoods popular with students affordable and desirable for everyone. We’ll keep you posted on how the proposal fares.