Last month, I mentioned Senate Bill-827 (Wiener/Ting/Skinner – “transit-rich
housing”) which sets minimum building heights statewide for all parcels at 45
feet, which increases to 85 feet-plus if within a quarter mile or half mile of transit
lines, which can be moved or created.
The 85-foot height limit would not include the additional 2-3 floors that could
be added as a bonus under another state bill.
A less well-known new companion bill from Sen. Scott Wiener is SB-828 (Housing
Element Revision). It mandates all cities to build a seemingly exponential number of
units through a carry-forward provision of a building allocation quota called the
Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA). The Association of Bay Area Governments
(ABAG) hands out this allocation of thousands of new units that San Francisco is
supposed to build within a certain number of years (called a “housing cycle”).
Under SB-828, the unelected “council of government or regional planning agency” can
tell the City to add the number of units not met from the current cycle to the next
housing cycle, seemingly ad-infinitum.
The bill states that it will “alleviate rent or home prices, especially for moderate
and above-moderate income households,” and that for San Francisco, with the
added claim to fame of having fulfilled SB-828’s criteria of being a city with high income
rates and high rental and home prices, would end up having to build units to
accommodate for 200 percent of the RHNA’s quota assignment, with no regard to
community impacts and with no local control. No supervisors, no mayors and especially
no neighbors need chime in.
Voice your opinion to Wiener at the website at http://senate.ca.gov/senators.
Categories: Letters to the Editor