The State of California is (Finally) Forcing Through Affordable Housing Laws, Overruling Municipal NIMBYism - interior design Blogs

The State of California is (Finally) Forcing Through Affordable Housing Laws, Overruling Municipal NIMBYism

This article was originally published by The Architect's Newspaper as "A wave of affordable and market-rate housing could soon wash ashore in California."

© Kimson Doan

This article was originally published by The Architect's Newspaper as "A wave of affordable and market-rate housing could soon wash ashore in California."In recent months, legislators in California have begun a concerted effort to use state law to address the state?s ongoing housing crisis. The moves come amid worsening regional inequality that has pushed housing affordability outside the reach of many populations. Facing mounting pressure from a growing cohort of pro-housing YIMBY activists and increasingly grim economic and social impacts?including a sharp increase in the number of rent-burdened households and the number of individuals and families experiencing homelessness?state-level legislators have begun to take action where municipal leaders have thus far stopped short.Late last year, the California State Legislature approved a bundle of housing-focused bills in what amounted to the first key win for state-led housing reform efforts. The legislature passed a total of seven bills aimed at streamlining permitting, enforcing regional housing production benchmarks, and preventing municipalities from down-zoning parcels or rejecting by-right projects. Several of the bills also aimed to stimulate new housing spending for affordable units, including a measure that will allow for a low-income housing-focused $3 billion bond to go onto the November 2018 statewide ballot and a measure that institutes a modest levy on certain real estate transactions in the state in order to raise up to $250 million each year for low income housing construction. The two combined measures could make over $8 billion in new funding available for affordable housing production over the next decade.These bills followed the adoption in late 2016 of a streamlined Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) ordinance that legalizes backyard homes across the state while also providing minimum zoning standards for ADUs that homeowners and developers can follow when local rules do not exist. The shift has led to a surge in ADU applications across California?s big and small cities alike, as homeowners move to build new ADUs while also legalizing existing bootlegged units. In a blow to NIMBY activists, the move also essentially doubled the residential density of the state?s single-family zoned lots overnight, with the added benefit that ADUs developed in certain areas?historic districts, ½-mile from transit?could be built without added parking. A recent report from the University of California, Berkeley?s Terner Center for Housing Innovation concluded that ?ADUs are poised to play a significant role in alleviating California?s housing crisis and state, regional, and local leaders should continue to examine ways in which barriers to this type of development can be removed.? The report c...
Source: Archdaily
URL: http://www.archdaily.com/

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