With local control compromised, SF attempts to announce California’s high-stakes housing plan

The board will have little leverage over revising or changing the city’s plan to rededicate portions of the city to allow for 34,000 more housing units.

But that doesn’t mean the board members don’t have much say.

On Tuesday, the board will hold an informational hearing on the fourth and most recent draft of the state-mandated “residential element” released last month. While the board will ultimately vote on the element in January, they won’t be able to rewrite things they don’t like or add language they do. Therefore, Tuesday’s meeting might be the best choice for board members who want to influence the final draft of the item.

The 34,000 units of “extra capacity” will be focused on the city’s “resource-rich” trade corridors — much of them in the Sunset and Richmond counties — which haven’t seen much development in recent decades. This represents a 36% increase over the last iteration of the housing element, a state contract that governs how and where California cities produce their share of housing.

San Francisco housing is projected to produce 82,000 units between 2023 and 2031, of which 46,000 must be affordable for low- and middle-income residents. Additionally, the Element must create a blueprint for “fair housing”, which means a significant amount of new housing development must take place in “well-endowed” neighborhoods where discrimination and zoning regulations have historically combined to keep newcomers – particularly people – keep away from paint – and new construction.

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