Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass last Wednesday announced a new executive order to reduce permitting time for housing by 25-30%, a move that could significantly expand housing production. Combined with the pending codification of Bass’ earlier executive order allowing for the streamlined production of higher-density affordable housing, the city says the measure could make significant strides toward alleviating its housing crisis.
The San Diego City Council rejected a wide-ranging package of housing incentives on Monday based in part on concerns about concentrating more poverty in San Diego’s low-income areas. Council members declined to approve either of the two versions of the package of incentives, which aim to spur more housing for college students, people facing homelessness, and middle-income residents. City officials said a revised version of the package would likely return to the council next year.
New land use regulations could bring thousands of homes and new commercial development to the Burbank Media District. Burbank planning officials are currently conducting an update to the Media District specific plan, the first overhaul of zoning rules which were put into effect in the early 1990s. While 212 acres of the specific plan area are developed with multimedia studios, and thus unlikely to yield new housing development, there are a number of underutilized properties within its boundaries that have been identified by the city as opportunity sites for either infill construction or adaptive reuse.
On November 13, the Palo Alto City Council voted to approve a series of zone changes that relax height and density limits in various sections of the city, mostly south of Oregon Expressway. Under the new rules, the maximum height in the El Camino focus area would now be 85 feet. Properties along this stretch would also have floor-area-ratio of 4.0, allowing developers to build at more than double the intensity than the existing code allows. Similar changes would apply to the industrial and commercial corridor around San Antonio Road and Fabian Way, an area where the council hopes to add about 2,000 units between now and 2031.
On November 7, the Mountain View City Council deliberated on key topics related to the second phase of updates to the Downtown Precise Plan, which covers a 100-acre area that stretches from the Transit Center to El Camino Real. One key consideration was a proposal to temporarily cap office development downtown. The council ultimately determined, pursuant to a 3 to 2 vote, that current market conditions already limit new office development and staff efforts should be focused on other priority items.
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