Blogging Bayport Alameda

March 7, 2018

Yet another housing related post

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

YIMBYs, specifically California and even more specifically Bay Area YIMBYs are featured in the latest CityLab piece.  Because we keep talking about the housing crisis featuring it in local articles and national articles and yet our fearless leaders seem to be content to do very little about it.

From City Lab:

The most ambitious bill in the package, SB 827, co-sponsored by California YIMBY, would essentially rewrite local zoning controls across the state. The bill bans local jurisdictions from imposing certain zoning requirements that mandate parking and restrict density near mass transit and high-frequency bus stops. The idea is both to increase the housing stock, and bolster the state’s public transit services, some of which are bleeding riders. “You have these invaluable assets, major transit investments, where very few people get to live near them, and we want more people to live near them,” Wiener said.

New height limits in these areas would be no lower than 45 feet on narrow streets, and 85 feet on the widest streets. “What you’re going to see is more and more of these smaller apartment buildings, these four, six, eight units—what the Washington Post recently referred to as the ‘missing middle,’” Wiener said.

Opponents of SB 827 say that despite the inevitable increase in housing supply, the bill would actually increase rents and home values in low-income, transit-adjacent neighborhoods by signaling that they are open for luxury development. In response to these concerns, Wiener released a series of amendments to the bill, which include policies that protect residents of rent-controlled housing, and provide tenants of demolished buildings the opportunity to rent in the newly constructed buildings at the rate they previously paid.The bill’s biggest threat will likely be powerful homeowners’ groups—the historical practitioners of NIMBYism—and their old-school environmentalist allies. The Sierra Club of California was one of the first major political groups to come out against SB 827, citing concerns that it could fuel opposition to transit. (The organization has also signaled openness to supporting an amended version of the bill, saying in a statement, “this bill has the right aim, but the wrong method.”) Wiener, a self-described environmentalist, says the bill would lower the state’s carbon footprint by encouraging transit-oriented development.

Of course, as pointed out by a commenter yesterday, the top gubernatorial candidates have  committed to building an outlandish number of units tomorrow if they are to be elected.  But unless the state does something of the SB 827 then every development and every project will still have opponents like this one who have outsized sway on local decision makers.


  1. I’m worried about the Manhattan-ization of Alameda.

    Comment by Jack — March 7, 2018 @ 7:33 am

    • That seems to be what is already happening without any significant new housing. I see posts about people being pushed out of Alameda everyday from rising rents and lack of options to purchase or rent at any price. Yesterday, I saw someone post that they were desperately looking for something at $4500/mo. I am pretty sure *they* will find something, but if you are looking to rent a house for ~3K or less, good luck to you and you have a lot of competition. Personally, I think is criminal the way new development has been delayed and deterred in Alameda.

      Comment by Spanky McDoogle (@SpankyMcDoogle) — March 7, 2018 @ 9:02 am

    • Maybe we should dig a moat and make Oakland pay for it so we can truly Make Alameda Great Again!

      Comment by Rod — March 7, 2018 @ 10:56 am

  2. I agreed with Jack. I too am worried that we will become an island only for the wealthy (and those luckily born into low property taxes). Let’s build more housing.

    Comment by Gaylon — March 7, 2018 @ 8:24 am

  3. The problem with SB 827 is that it increases density without building affordable housing. 37 affordable housing advocate groups in Los Angeles went on record against SB 827:

    Bob Silvestri is an architect. His take on SB 827 is well worth reading. From his Marin Post blog:

    The biggest irony here, of course, is that SB 827 doesn’t even require that low income housing be built for all those low income people that Wiener claims to care so much about. In fact, his legislation reduces (SB 35) or removes (SB 827) local inclusionary zoning as a requirement. Wiener just likes to use low-income families as a useful talking point.

    Comment by vigi — March 7, 2018 @ 10:54 am

    • It’s cute how you pretend to care about the low income folks!

      Comment by Rod — March 7, 2018 @ 10:57 am

      • That’s because I am one, Rod. I hope you actually read the links I posted.

        Comment by vigi — March 7, 2018 @ 10:59 am

        • You unsurprisingly miss my point entirely, which is that I find your “concern” about low income housing to be highly disingenuous, using it cynically to further your NIMBY agenda. And knowing the kinds of things you typically spew in these comments, I’m not going to waste my time reading something that you think validates your opinions. And particularly not some opinion piece with the word “snowflake” in the title. It has a deplorable stench to it, much like your disingenuous “concern.”

          Comment by Rod — March 7, 2018 @ 1:57 pm

        • And Rod baby is quietly out gathering shovels in order to dig his moat.

          Comment by Jack — March 7, 2018 @ 5:07 pm

  4. i’m worried that Alameda will need pontoons to keep it afloat when my grandkid’s grandkids live here.

    Comment by Jack — March 7, 2018 @ 6:17 pm

  5. What happened to JKW and his seawall?

    Comment by Jack — March 7, 2018 @ 6:30 pm

  6. Use of the word “disingenuous”-twice in the same comment! . I see you are a person who does not want to be confused with facts.

    This post is kinda late to the party on SB 827. Opinion pieces have been published on SB 827 for months. SB 827 is opposed by Jesse Arreguin, the Mayor of Berkeley, and Physicians for Social Responsibility..

    Zelda Bronstein: . The author thinks SB 827 is a war on people of color.

    Comment by vigi — March 7, 2018 @ 6:47 pm

    • I’ll pass on your alternative facts, thanks! And some people are so disingenuous that you have to use the word twice. Congratulations on being that much extra!

      Comment by Rod — March 8, 2018 @ 9:02 am

    • 48 Hills and its predecessor, the SF Bay Guardian, have spent years denying that supply and demand have any relation to housing affordability. They are a case study in how progressives end up as conservatives. To be very generous to the members of the ACT, they may have also fallen prey to this affliction. There was a preposterous letter from the group in one of the free papers a little while ago protesting that they were progressive. If one takes their claims at face value (my generosity is boundless), it’s still reasonable to judge them by the effects of their policy positions. The area’s housing crisis was caused by exactly the policies they favor, which are based on a basic lack of understanding (ingenuous perhaps) of economics.

      Comment by BC — March 8, 2018 @ 12:05 pm

      • Dismissing well-reasoned arguments without even reading them, simply based on where they are published, sounds pretty “disingenuous” to me. Or lazy. In any case, it is the very definition of prejudice = preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience.

        I take it that, like Robert Gammon, you also believe everyone who advocated for 1972’s Measure A was a racist? Another false narrative.

        NB: When you click on Rod’s linked name, it takes you to Dank Alameda Meme Stash. A troll collective. That’s all I need to know.

        Comment by vigi — March 8, 2018 @ 12:32 pm

        • You’ve got a lot of nerve calling anyone else a troll!

          Comment by Rod — March 8, 2018 @ 1:14 pm

        • I read it.

          Not everyone.

          Comment by BC — March 8, 2018 @ 1:14 pm

        • You’ve got a lot of nerve calling anyone else a troll, or referring to any of your arguments as “well reasoned.”

          Comment by Rod — March 8, 2018 @ 1:17 pm

  7. BBA likes to cite The Marin Post. OK .The YIMBY movement is Astroturf, crafted by tech millionaires/billionaires

    ” YIMBY organizations are also well-funded and, by and large, those identifying themselves as YIMBYs are educated, entitled young urban professionals (“Yuppies”). They are not poor, [not] victims of racism or redlining by lenders, disenfranchised or otherwise precluded from job opportunities or the ability to live anywhere they can afford.”

    Comment by vigi — March 8, 2018 @ 1:23 pm

    • I know I can’t wait to get my big fat check from George Soros, big tech, and the space aliens for my help in this “astroturf” movement to actually build enough housing for people who actually need it!

      Comment by Rod — March 8, 2018 @ 1:38 pm

    • Marin is the spiritual home of conservatives pretending to be progressives. Is there anywhere more NIMBY-plagued?

      Comment by BC — March 8, 2018 @ 4:14 pm

      • And, of course, Marinites are so much more hypocritical than Tech-employed YIMBYs pretending to care about poor people, while agitating for more housing for themselves, while they put in their 2.5 years of employment in the Bay area.

        Comment by vigi — March 9, 2018 @ 11:24 am

        • Supply and demand determine price. It’s really not that complicated. Of course, only multi-generation children of the Alameda soil, who’ve never gone anywhere in their lives, count. And, imagine–for the sake of argument only–you were to have inherited a house, then housing-affordability would not a problem for you. Indeed high prices would increase your wealth.

          Comment by BC — March 9, 2018 @ 3:53 pm

    • Fairly sure I don’t cite the Marin Post as a positive citation. But close reading of my posts has never been your strong suit.

      Comment by Lauren Do — March 10, 2018 @ 5:50 am

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