Residents alarmed by program encouraging density in residential developments

By  : sfexaminer – excerpt

It’s widely agreed that more than one solution is needed to solve San Francisco’s housing crisis.

But allowing taller development projects in the less dense west side of The City shouldn’t necessarily be one of them.

That’s according to the some 100 residents, primarily from the Sunset and Richmond districts, who packed a community meeting at the Ortega Library on Thursday night to address concerns with a housing program introduced by Mayor Ed Lee and Supervisor Katy Tang last month that seeks to increase below­-market­-rate units throughout The City.

The Affordable Housing Bonus Program would apply to some 30,850 parcels in San Francisco, primarily in areas zoned as neighborhood districts where commercial use is either required or permitted on the ground floor, with residential units above. Projects that develop at least five units of housing would benefit from the program.

Incentives for developers would include taller height limits — ­up to an additional two stories — and increased density for building 30 percent of the homes on­-site as below-market-rate. Developers of at least 10-­unit projects are required by current city law to include 12 percent of on­-site homes as below­-market-­rate or pay a fee.

Taller buildings, however, did not sit well with residents at the meeting, who argued oceanfront property along the Great Highway is ripe for developers who want to take advantage of the program. Tang emphasized that it’s highly unlikely a wall of developments will rise along the water anytime soon.

All of the sudden, we’re going to get these seven­-story buildings on the beach ­— that is very unrealistic,” Tang said.

City planners estimate the program would apply to some 240 sites throughout San Francisco, potentially bringing up to 4,000 below­-market-­rate units in the next two decades.

While residents at the meeting supported building more below­-market­-rate housing, many voiced strong opposition to increasing density in a neighborhood they opted to live in specifically because of the shorter buildings, more open space, beach views and ample parking.

“My main concern with the program is that it’s going to change the culture of this neighborhood dramatically. We’re not made to have high­-rises,” said Ann Grimaldi, a longtime Sunset district resident…

Tang emphasized the program will not take effect until next year. An informational hearing is scheduled at the Planning Commission meeting next week, and the legislation must still receive approval from the Board of Supervisors.

“We are in no rush to pass this legislation,” Tang said… (more)

“Tang emphasized the program will not take effect until next year.” Next year is two months away. Most of the fights at City Hall are between the developer-freindly administration and the residents who want to regain control of their city. It started in the Mission and the Eastern Neighborhoods, but has spread to the westside of town. The Affordable Housing Bonus Plan is the proof that the Mission Moratorium is the first step to stopping the highrise spread to the Ocean. The first place developers will strike is at the ocean. See the maps below for proof of that the plan has no limits. In fact, the plan is to remove all limits. More details are here.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s