Blogging Bayport Alameda

November 3, 2015

Across the water

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:03 am

It’s not at all Alameda related and I know there are important things on the City Council agenda tonight but also important is a look across the water at the election today in San Francisco which has a ton of housing related ballot measures which could prove to be very informative from  policy standpoint if they are to pass.  With the break down, excerpts from City Lab:

Melee might be the best word for whatever happens at the San Francisco ballots on Tuesday. The city’s all-tiers housing crisis is at the center of the electoral showdown, with seven out of 11 propositions related to these issues in some way. With so much at stake, here are the key measures to watch for.

Proposition F: The “Airbnb thing”

Prop. F changes the cap to 75 nights per year. It also requires hosts and platforms to report more information to the city about their operations; If a host exceeds the 75-night cap, for example, he’s prohibited from listing his unit. The measure also empowers neighbors and non-profits to seek legal action against violators.

Tony Daysog also proposed to regulate AirBnB even though the rent study showed that there was very little meaningful impact on Alameda’s rent inventory based on Airbnb activity.


Proposition I: A moratorium in the Mission

Heart right, head wrong: That’s the story with this measure, which would institute an 18- to 30-month moratorium on any housing development in the Mission that is not 100 percent affordable. It would also require the city to create a “Neighborhood Stabilization Plan” by January 2017.

But as CityLab has pointed out before, new development has never really been the Mission’s problem. Since 2000, the neighborhood has seen fewer than 100 new units added per year. If anything, it’s the lack of development that’s pushing longtime residents out—all over the city, supply does not meet demand. As my colleague Kriston Capps put it, San Francisco is in a housing drought.

This one has been a bit of a head scratcher for me, as have comments from Alamedans decrying the rent crisis but at the same time complaining about over development in a city that has built less than 2 multifamily units per 1000 residents in the last 13 years.

And another:

Proposition A: The housing bond that may not go far enough

$310 million for affordable housing: That’s what Mayor Ed Lee is asking voters to approve, in hopes of fulfilling his pledge to build 30,000 units of housing, “with at least one-third of those permanently affordable to low- and moderate-income families, and the majority of those within financial reach of working, middle-income San Franciscans.”

File this one under: at least San Francisco is trying to put words to action by putting money into building affordable housing in the form of a housing bond.  One step that Alameda could take per staff’s recommendation is putting “Boomerang funds” into action toward building affordable housing.  There might be $16 million available for that, which is not $310 million, but could be leveraged toward getting other grants for much needed affordable (read subsidized) housing.

Another measure that didn’t make it on the City Lab digest is the building of housing on surplus public land which would target affordable housing developments for this land:

Shall the City to expand the allowable uses of surplus property to include building affordable housing for a range of households from those who are homeless or those with very low income to those with incomes up to 120% of the area median income; and, for projects of more than 200 units, make some housing available for households earning up to 150% or more of the area median income?

All of these are worth watching for a sense of how that the most housing impacted City in the region deals with the issue.



  1. I know the rent problem is not commercial, but AT&T is selling it building in Oakland according to the SF Business Times and “AT&T is also said to have looked at Alameda’s Marina Village for a possible lease, according to three sources familiar with the property, but an AT&T spokesman said it wasn’t considering the location. Alameda’s office rents are cheaper than Oakland’s, in part because of the island city’s lack of BART service. CBRE, which also represented the Marina Village property, declined to comment. AT&T also has a significant presence at Bishop Ranch in San Ramon, where it sold its regional headquarters last year.”

    One of the reasons Alameda office rents are cheaper then Oakland’s transportation which is why the housing rents are lower then the nice parts of Oakland in “my” opinion (not a fact).

    Comment by Jake — November 3, 2015 @ 4:33 pm

  2. According to SF Business Times article: “Oakland ranked nation’s fifth-most expensive rental market, Zumper says”, thus we probably can expect rentals in Alameda to be expensive also and according also the “A moratorium in the Mission” lost. You can’t expect to see rents stay the same with no new housing…simple supply and demand…limit one supply the cost rise.

    Comment by Jake — November 4, 2015 @ 7:49 am

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