Blogging Bayport Alameda

June 9, 2021

I love this song

Filed under: Alameda — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:09 am

Folks it’s not always easy to get excited about city meeting agendas but I legit yelped in delight when I saw what City staff had in store for the joint Planning Board and Historic Advisory Board meeting. This meeting is a continuation of the larger discussion around the General plan, our RHNA allocation, and Housing Element. I’ll tackle the General Plan update agenda item some other time, but this agenda item about the Housing Element update is where the real drama lies.

Staff boldly offers this resolution language for the PB and HAB to consider recommending to the City Council to adopt:

There’s a lot in this agenda item which should help people understand why this process is important but few will read it. I’ll highlight that section in another post but wanted to stay on this extraordinary text.

It’s been super difficult for a lot of folks who love A/26, or rather love the exclusion and exclusivity that it brings to certain neighbors, to comprehend the fact that keeping A/26 in our charter means that every seven years we need to make the choice to either violate state law or violate Alameda’s City Charter. So far, we’ve done the latter. This seems not to bother A/26 true believers because so far the neighborhoods which have been affected by this charter violation have not been their own so they can blithely go about forgetting that this charter violation is no biggie when the City Council must take steps to violate the charter.

But this year things are a little different because we actually took a vote on whether to remove A/26 and the majority voted against doing that. Before we could have told ourselves lies like: maybe it would get removed if put to a vote so it’s not terrible if we do this itty bitty charter violation to keep the state happy. But now, we can’t tell ourselves these lies so we have to confront the conundrum head on: to preserve this exclusionary measure in our charter we must violate it in real world applications.

This seems…wrong…but I guess the logic works out in the same way that some folks think shouting “we’re an island” is a defense to nearly anything they’re unhappy about.

More language staff is recommending includes MF zoning overlays with a floor of 30 du/ac not a ceiling. 30 du/ac would be the minimum. Here’s where it gets juicy. It looks like staff has largely left R-1 and R-2 districts alone but all other R districts would have densities well over A/26 compliant zoning. R-1 and R-2 are mostly Bay Farm, the whole East End, the Gold Coast, and a small West End pocket near Encinal High School.

Someone kindly mapped out those R-1 zones here and unsurprisingly matches areas that were rated the best during the redlining days:

The numbers:

The tentative inventory list barely has Alameda meeting its RHNA numbers if it adopts all these changes. Alameda’s allocation is 5353, this list estimates 5400 units leaving no wiggle room for people to ask for special dispensation to remove their pet plot of land from these overlays.


  1. Comment by JM — June 9, 2021 @ 11:06 am

    • What kind of “age-restricted” filth are you trying to show to us kids?!

      Comment by Think of the Children — June 9, 2021 @ 11:43 am

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