State Mandating More Low-Income Housing in Antioch

The Planning Commission of the City of Antioch will hold a public hearing at City Hall at 6:30 P.M. March 7th on Issues and Options for Antioch’s next 7 Year Housing Element Plan required by the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG). An excellent staff report on the subject can be downloaded from the City’s web site.

Here’s a brief synopsis:

AGAG calculated Antioch’s Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) to be 2,282 units, including 516 very low-income and 330 low-income units.

ABAG also concluded that since the previous 7-year planning period (1996-2006) did not identify enough sites to accommodate the entire allocation of low and very low-income units, the City’s adjusted RHNA be increased to 3,310 units.

As the City was unable to find enough land to meet its share of the regional need for lower income units, it will probably need to amend its existing ordinance to allow some residential projects to be approved WITHOUT A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT OR DEVELOPMENT APPROVAL.

Projects that include lower income units to be entitled to a density bonus under State law and thus would be entitled to provide reduced parking. Parking requirements could also be reduced by providing shuttle or van service to shopping, social services and transit stations or limiting the areas where parking reductions apply to neighhoods or districts closer to transit or shopping. (Rivertown projects, for instance, could offer the option of paying an in-lieu fee to be used to construct a future parking structure.)

The City has hired Dyett & Bhatia as consultant to assist in adjusting our Housing Element program to become in full compliance with State law and make regulations consistent with the State density bonus requirements and establish new zoning districts and programs to accommodate new dwelling units.

Two options are suggested to help the city rezone sufficient land to accommodate its allocation for lower income units at the so called ”default density” (30 units per acre for Antioch and other suburban cities with more than 100,000 population).

One is to rezone 106.5 acres to establish a zone where multi development is permitted at 20 units per acre and rezone sufficient land at a minimum density of 30 units per acre. (Six sites with more than 50 acres in the Rivertown/Urban Waterfront Focus Area could be rezoned from PBC to allow residential development of a minimum density of 20 units per acre.)

The other option is to rezone 59.47 acres at a density of 30 units per acre and continue to require a conditional use permit or planned development approval for some or all units.

The zoning ordinance also needs amending to establish fixed standards and requirements in regard to development features. Some of the changes to be considered include: Reducing the existing 25-30 foot setback from collector streets and establish front yard build to or set back zones that would allow homes about 10-15 feet closer to the street, requiring parking to be located to the rear instead of instead of in front of buildings, etc.

Because Antioch does not have sufficient facilities to accommodate the need for emergency shelters, it must identify a zone or zones where at least one year round shelter can be established. It is proposed to amend our current ordinance to allow such a shelter on City owned land near Delta Fair and Century Blvd., including a site that the Bay Area Rescue Mission had considered for a transitional housing facility.

Based on an estimated density of 200 shelter beds per acre, the sites could accommodate both the 124 emergency shelter beds the City needs to meet the State requirement as well as 100 units of transitional housing and associated services.

Among other options is amending our zoning ordinance to define Single Room Occupancy (SRO) units as a form of multi-family housing and allow SROs in the Rivertown High Density Residential and Transit-Oriented Residential Districts subject to specific limitations.

I don’t know about you folks, but I’m tired of government intervention, e.g., being told what light bulb I can use or having to bring an reusable bag to the grocery store. We all need to protest the proliferation of proposed parcel taxes on future parcel ballot measures and the imposition of zoning mandates on local communities by MTC and ABAG, the latest scheme which is entitled ONE BAY AREA PLAN, one of the many mandates touted to reduce greenhouse gasses but which in reality are just meant to overturn local control of zoning.

Please attend this planning meeting because as Abraham Lincoln once said “To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.”

4 Comments to “State Mandating More Low-Income Housing in Antioch”

  1. Beverly Knight says:

    I attended the planning commission meeting. There was no public hearing on the next seven year plan for low income housing. Your article sparked a good turnout at the planning commission meeting tonight. The the items you wrote about in your article were not on the agenda. The commission seemed surprised to see us. The public hearing on low income housing was some kind of rumor. They didn’t know where it started. Can you explain what the misunderstanding is. I don’t know if you look at the Take Back Antioch facebook page. They posted a link to your article. Last I checked there was 57 comments. Can you please explain where you got your information. We are very confused. Please help us out. Thank you Beverly Knight

  2. Publisher says:

    Ms. Knight,

    Thank you for posting your comments. I have asked Barbara to respond to your comments and also where she got her information that was included in her column with regards to tonight’s Planning Commission meeting agenda.

    Allen Payton

    • Barbara Zivica says:

      I saw a Notice of Public Hearing in the legal section of the CC Times that the planning comm. would hold a public hearing on 3/7 re amending the muni code of the residential dev. allocation ordinance to extend the ordinance sunset date to 5/1/2013. I then went to the city web site and pulled up a staff report to the planning commission by a consultant re issues and options for the 2007-2014 housing element implmentation. I thought the info, which was presented to the Planning Comm in Feb. would be publically discussed at 3/7 hearing. Apparently it wasn’t. Sure hope council fights ABAG in regard to their mandate the city accommodate 3,310 units of low and very low income housing!

  3. Barbara Zivica says:

    More info:
    Go to Previous message | Go to Next message | Back to MessagesMark as Unread | Print ReplyReply AllMove…Draft-000Saved MailScreened Mailuntitled
    Flag this messageCORRECTED WATCHDOG COLUMNFriday, March 9, 2012 1:26 PM
    From: This sender is DomainKeys verified”barbara zivica” View contact detailsTo: “Dave Roberts” Cc: info@antiochherald.comAs readers know, the Planning Commission held a public hearing on 3/7 in which I thought they would discuss issues and options for the 2007-2014 housing element implementation (ABAG mandates) which were presented to the Planning Commission in February. They did not. The only item under discussion was amending the existing Residential Development Allocation Ordinance sunset date to 20113.

    I contacted Tina Wehrmeister, the city’s Community Development Director who advises me that currently ABAG is working on the Sustainable Communities Strategy (planning to 2040) and the Regional Housing Needs Allocation for the next housing element period of 2014-2022. Key dates and document releases coming soon.

    Today, March 9th, the joint MTC/ABAG Planning Committee will release the preferred Sustainable Community Strategy scenario for public comment and on 3/15 the ABAG Executive Board will release the draft Regional Housing Needs Allocation for public comment. Both items will be brought before a future Council for discussion and direction to staff.

    To all of you who showed up for the 3/7 council meeting to comment on ABAG’s mandates, my apologies. Know, however, you made an decided impact even though the Planning Commission did not discuss the staff report presented to them in February. City hall has been put on notice that residents are concerned about the quantity of low and very low income housing ABAG feels our city should accommodate.

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