Nov 15 2022

Housing Element Authorized by Council to Be Sent to State

On November 15, 2022 at the Special Council Meeting on the Housing Element, the Council unanimously voted to:

“Approve the attached Resolution authorizing staff to finalize and submit the City of Piedmont’s Sixth Cycle Draft Housing Element to the California Department Of Housing And Community Development For Review.”

 No Council changes were made to the proposal. 

All participants appeared to understand the necessity of moving forward on the Housing Element in meeting the January 31, 2023 deadline and responding to the Housing and Community Development Department.

A number of speakers wanted additional consideration of housing on city property in the center of Piedmont.  Others were supportive of the changes made to the November 15, 2022 proposal.

Interest was expressed regarding evaluating public safety facilities in conjunction with housing in Central Piedmont, recognition of safety issues related to adding housing next to schools in the congested center of Piedmont, need to support recreational spaces given the increase in population, potential of isolating low-income families in Moraga Canyon, and renewed planning study of Central Piedmont.

READ the authorized Housing Element >HERE.


5 Responses to “Housing Element Authorized by Council to Be Sent to State”

  1. I generally commend the city staff and Council for trying to work through a fundamentally flawed state process. Besides the fact that the gross state and regional allocations are not based on current demographic trends, the allocations to each city are arbitrary and not based on any knowledge of a jurisdiction’s available vacant and underutilized sites.

    Built-out Piedmont with less than 2 square miles of land is assigned 587 units. Woodside in the heart of job-rich Silicon Valley gets only 328 units but has 11 square miles, 5+ times larger. Orinda with a BART Station and a 10-lane freeway, and 12 square miles of lightly developed land gets an allocation of only 557 units.

    It is hard to be respectful of such a flawed system. Only a few cities appealed their numbers. If more had, the pushback would have had political clout. A legislative fix is needed. But until then Piedmont will have to just provide a good faith effort to appear to achieve the unachievable.

  2. Thank you Michael for providing a greater-than-local protective on this phenomenon.

  3. This whole process is totally flawed! Why does the Council think that the low income housing must be in better location(s) than some of the current housing along Maxwelton above Moraga? Don’t expect me to pay for your absurdity!

  4. I think the LWC consultant may have somewhat addressed Michael’s question of why the disparity in allocations. In a discussion of the meaning of “high resource” I recall she said that HCD was using criteria like good schools and parks rather than public transit, access to services and underutilized sites to assign RHNA allocations. So that’s an equity rather than smart growth filter. The Housing Element assigns virtually all of the affordable housing to the city’s border neighborhoods. It will be interesting to see how HCD interprets this in light of their definition of “high resource”.

  5. I haven’t done the research but I’d guess that both Orinda and Woodside have comparable high achieving schools and I’m sure more park acreage per capita.
    Vacant and underutilized sites should be the most important criteria in terms of achieving housing goals. Without such sites almost nothing happens.

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