My View: Apartments for All is Just Rhetoric for Justifying Not Building Student Housing in Town

Eileen Samitz discussing housing in August 2015

This weekend Eileen Samitz continues her crusade against mega-dorms and for more “apartments designed for all” with an op-ed in the local paper.

However, the main thrust of her piece is not housing for families, but rather another push for the university to build more on campus: “UCD’s Long-Range Development Plan needs to add the 50/100 student housing plan.”

Her main points are that UC Davis has increased enrollment without building corresponding housing, that the university’s proposed 90/40 housing plan is inadequate, that UC Davis needs to go to 100/50, that UC Davis currently “forces” 71 percent of its students off campus after their freshman year, that the “massive student population” will be forced to live off-campus going forward, and of course that “exclusionary mega-dorm proposals bring cumulative impacts and costs.”

To start with, let us look at the numbers again.  UC Davis is planning to add about 6200 beds on campus in the next ten years.  That is the gist of the 90/40 plan which accounts for 90 percent of new enrollment growth and a total housed student population on campus of 40 percent.

To get to 50 percent of total enrollment, we figure they need to add about a total of 10,000 beds.  That leaves their current plan 3800 beds short.  UC Davis, we expect, will go to an EIR next month with their 6200-bed plan, and, while they can certainly increase above it, increasing the population by a lot will generate the need for a new EIR.

The Vanguard supports a 50 percent plan, as did the city council and the Yolo County Board of Supervisors.  Ms. Samitz wants to push for another 3800 beds on campus – I say go for it.  But I do think the city needs to plan as though UC Davis is not going to increase their allotment this cycle.

This is where the policy dispute lies – those who believe that the university should take on an additional 10 percent of students versus those who believe, while that would be easier from a policy standpoint, realistically that’s not going to happen.

The rest of Ms. Samitz’s piece takes off from here and she argues: “An alarming consequence of UCD’s irresponsible behavior and delay tactics regarding providing on-campus housing is that many mega-dorms, with all of their impacts and costs, are being proposed by private developers in the city.”

Elsewhere I have taken issue with the term mega-dorm (see here),  which I continue to believe is a misnomer and a rhetorical device that engenders fear rather than rational assessment of the needs of the community.

Rather than exhaustively quote the rest of the piece, I will pull out a few key points.

First, she argues, “These proposals would add up to 5,000 to 6,000 student beds in projects that are exclusionary by design because they are predominantly four- and five-bedroom apartment suites renting by the bed, with individual bathrooms.”

By my count the combined total of Sterling Apartments, Lincoln40, Plaza 2555, and Nishi is around 4500 beds, but perhaps there is another project she is counting that I’m not thinking of.

While Sterling and Lincoln40 are rent by bed and predominantly four- and five-bedroom apartments, we really don’t have a design for Nishi, and Plaza 2555 has a more varied approach and is rent-by-the-unit apartments.

I agree that these apartments are largely designed for students – but, as I have pointed out elsewhere, even if you designed apartments to be one, two, and three bedrooms like Ms. Samitz says she prefers, apartments in Davis that are market rate (as we have pointed out elsewhere), are not affordable to families in Davis by and large.

A point that Ms. Samitz is missing is that we should design apartments largely for students.  We should design them densely and in a compact manner to maximize capacity, because 85 percent of our rental market according to our analysis of the 2010 Census is students.  And even if we build smaller apartments, students will by and large live there as well, as they are the largest population and they can double up to increase affordability – something that families cannot do.

Ms. Samitz argues, “The vacancy rate will not improve, especially for non-students.”  Part of her reasoning is that “UCD will continue to add thousands more students every year” and she argues
that UC Davis will continue “to delay and minimize the number of on-campus student beds being added.”

This is complex on several levels.

The first question is whether the vacancy rate will improve.  Right now it is hard for it to get worse, there were in the last housing survey just 34 vacant units in the entire city out of like 10,000 (I’m rounding off here).  The rate is 0.2 percent.  So if the city builds its 4500 beds and UC Davis builds its 6200 beds, we should expect that the vacancy rate will improve.  How much?  Hard to say.

The second part of this is more complicated.  Ms. Samitz is arguing incorrectly here that UC Davis will continue to add thousands more students every year – right now they have projected the need for housing based on their ten-year projected enrollment increase.  If they stick to that projected enrollment increase, UC Davis really isn’t adding thousands of new students each year, they’ve already planned for those and the 6200 figure takes that into account.

What Ms. Samitz is probably arguing, and with justification, is that previously the university has failed to live up to its obligations for adding housing.  I agree.  That is a huge problem.

However, the solution to UC Davis not building enough housing is not for us to build less housing – that just compounds the problem and makes things far worse.

Later Ms. Samitz argues: “If new multi-family development is going to be costly for the city, it needs to be housing in which everyone can live, including families and workers, not just students,” and then she adds, “Instead of mega-dorms, any new multi-family housing needs to have an inclusive design that suits all renters — individuals, families or students — as well as rental agreements that motivate conservation of water and energy.”

I want to address the water conservation issue because it is another often-repeated red herring.  The argument is that having more bathrooms – one per room – increases water use.  There is no more patently absurd argument than that.

Water usage for bathrooms is as follows: toilet use, shower use, brushing teeth and shaving use.  Is anyone going to take more showers or use the toilet more frequently because they have their own bathroom?  That’s ridiculous.  The biggest use of water internally is washing clothes and washing dishes, neither of which are dependent on number of restrooms.  And the biggest use of water is exterior use, something that is largely a non-factor for apartments.

So the water conservation issue is a non-issue that has been made up.

Finally, as we have pointed out, we do need housing for families in town.  We lack that.  Market rate apartments are not going to generate, by and large, housing for families.  We are going to need to get creative and generate some affordable-by-design housing for families – difficult to do when you have lots of kids and we are going to need more big A affordable housing that is subsidized.

Here are my thoughts on affordable market rate housing in Davis from earlier this week.

At the Social Services Commission meeting last week, many students came forward to once again talk about the housing problems that have befallen them – lack of available housing, lack of affordable (big or small A) housing, substandard housing.  There are students who are couch surfing and students working four or five jobs while taking 16 units, and students living in their cars because there is not enough housing and the housing we have costs too much.

I asked the students how many objected to idea of living in a mega-dorm – none of them raised their hands.  I have spoken over the past year with hundreds of students on housing, I work with students on a daily basis – their biggest concern is finding a place to live that they can afford.  That is a problem.

If creating a mega-dorm is the best and most efficient way to do that, then let’s approve these projects and figure out how to create affordable housing for families as a secondary measure.

But, for some reason, I suspect that concern for housing for families is second to the desire to block new housing within the city and attempts to force the university to build up its capacity on campus.

Students to a person feel that they have been caught in the middle of a struggle between the university and the city on housing.  That’s unfortunate.  This is a great university town, and it did not become great because we shortchanged the student experience.

—David M. Greenwald reporting



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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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124 thoughts on “My View: Apartments for All is Just Rhetoric for Justifying Not Building Student Housing in Town”

  1. Roberta Millstein

    So the water conservation issue is a non-issue that has been made up.

    As was discussed at the NRC on Monday, it’s neither a non-issue nor made-up.  If water use is included in the rent, there is no incentive to conserve.  If someone has their own shower/bathroom instead of having to share a shower/bathroom, there is no incentive to take shorter showers or spend less time in the bathroom.

      1. Roberta Millstein

        That’s not the message that the state was sending to citizens during the drought.  And the more people living in Davis (and the Central Valley more generally) the more we need to worry about the water use of individuals.

        1. Don Shor

          Water conservation measures focus on outdoor water use because it is typically 75 – 80% of residential water usage. The state mandated 30% water reduction overall for the whole state. Every water district approached that differently, but residents of single-family homes use substantially more water per capita than people who live in multi-family housing. In multi-family housing the owner would be responsible for the overall water use reduction during a drought. They can achieve that any number of ways, the simplest being via utility sub-metering. But if the building can achieve water conservation overall (by means of high efficiency plumbing fixtures and xeric landscaping, for example) then it isn’t really an issue as to whether there are individual bathrooms. If there is going to be a focus on water conservation, if should apply equally to your house and my business — and I’d guess both of us use a lot more water per capita than any student living in a multi-family apartment.

        2. David Greenwald

          But the states message was not exactly logical either.  You crack down on the guy taking the shower and not the almond farmer flooding his field.  And yet, my whole shower couldn’t come close to being a drop in the bucket in comparison.

    1. Richard McCann

      Roberta

      The differences in incentives in water use are truly trivial and a red herring. You need to come up with empirical evidence to support your assertion to counter what has been generally true in the literature on water conservation.

      The state wasn’t sending a drought message based on shorter showers. I consulted to the SWRCB on the drought regs in 2015 and the focus was largely on outside water use. The shorter shower was just a media soundbite.

      David, the State did crack down on the almond farmer, but in a different regulated environment. They severely curtailed deliveries to agricultural customers on both the SWP and CVP (5% of full contract deliveries in 2015). Agriculture cut back water use dramatically during the drought according to studies conduct by UCD faculty.

  2. Eric Gelber

    I suspect that concern for housing for families is second to the desire to block new housing within the city and attempts to force the university to build up its capacity on campus.

    This sweeping generalization, questioning others’ motives and sincerity, is unwarranted. Davis is, effectively, a company town. (Without UCD, Davis would be Dixon—not that there’s anything wrong with that.) There’s a shared responsibility to provide workforce housing. That workforce includes not only students but also UCD faculty and staff.

    It’s not unreasonable to identify unique roles for UCD and the City in meeting that responsibility for workforce housing. For example, dorms that are suited pretty much exclusively to the unique needs of students are reasonably the university’s role. The City, on the other hand, has a broader responsibility, beyond the needs of UCD. Diverse housing—including apartments of varying sizes and affordability—that meets the needs of the broader community—including but not limited to students and other university-affiliated community members—is appropriately the City’s role. Dormitory type housing (mega, mini, or in between) does not as effectively address the broader community need. Thus, opposition to community housing that is, effectively, exclusive to students is not unreasonable and does not imply broad opposition to new housing within the city.

  3. Eileen Samitz

    First of all David, if anything, it is clear that it is your article that is rhetoric continuing with your crusade of “build anything” even if it doesn’t help, or in the case of mega-dorms, just exacerbates the situation.

    My article is clear on what it is advocating for, and that is for building more apartments but using a design that works for non-students including local workers and families, as well as students.  I find it astonishing that you continue to throw local and workers and families under-the-bus regarding their need for apartments.

    Second, I included some background on UCD and its long-term negligence and how it continues to make the situation worse of its deficiency of on-campus housing.

    Third, I explain how UCD needs to help remedy the situation primarily by dialing back on its self-directed “UCD 2020 Initiative” for revenue for by extracting triple tuition from non-resident students when UCD can’t even house the California resident students they are admitting. Also, that UCD need to provide 50% on campus housing like the other six UC’s particularly because UCD is the largest UC with over 5,300 acres. This on-campus student housing shortage is inexcusable and all of this fallout from UCD’s irresponsibility regarding not providing the needed on-campus housing for its own grown is impacting its students, Davis and surrounding cities.

    Also, while you choose to not believe that have the excessive number of bathrooms built in the mega-dorm bathroom per bedroom, here is a quote from a Sac bee article clarifying why West Village has failed so miserably in its net zero energy goal and how it is not motivating water or energy conservation due to its mega-dorm design. There is nothing sustainable about that kind of design. This quote is from a UCD West Village student from the article:
    “I take pretty long showers and always keep the lights on (who pays $850 a month for a single bedroom). There’s no incentive to conserve. Of course they’re not getting zero net energy.”

    So instead of learning from UCD’s mistakes at West Village, what is the City doing? The City is repeating the mega-dorm non-sustainable design problem and on this scale of 5,000 – 6,000 student beds proposed in the City with the vast majority of these bedrooms having an individual bathroom.  I find it hard to believe that you do not think this will have a significant impact on our City’s water and waste water particularly when the flat rate per-bed monthly rent will be the same despite the usage of energy and water. Clearly this is not sustainable planning and not working at West Village. In case you have not heard, California is still in a drought.

    So, David, I also find it hard to believe that you continue with your statements like your ridiculous belief that families do not need apartments, particularly since that is how you and your family lived for years due to the scarcity of affordable rental houses. There is a huge demand for workers and families needing apartments and I am hearing about it all the time, particularly from single parents.

    Finally, your other absurd assumption is that these mega-dorm apartments will be “affordable”. These mega-dorm luxury student apartments will not be affordable and that was evident at the Social Services Commission meeting.
    Incidentally, I find it interesting that you did not mention that at the Social Services Commission meeting that Commissioners commented on how the mega-dorm design was not desirable (since it does not work for non-students), and that the number of bathrooms per bedroom luxury design was clearly concerning as well as the high cost of the Lincoln40” affordable” student beds.
     

    1. Don Shor

      In case you have not heard, California is still in a drought.

      California’s official drought emergency ended April 2017, except in four counties. (http://www.water.ca.gov/waterconditions/declaration.cfm)
      The goal of “making water conservation a way of life” continues (Executive Order B-37-16), but applies to all housing and businesses.

      dialing back on its self-directed “UCD 2020 Initiative”

      A large percentage of the 2020 Initiative has already been fulfilled in terms of increased enrollment. Since housing is an auxiliary expense that has to be largely self-funded in the UC system, it will not improve our present crisis to have them slow down the pace of enrollment — because that would likely slow down the pace of housing supply on campus. I do feel that issue should be a primary focus of discussion between the council and UC officials. But “dialing back” enrollment increases won’t improve the housing supply.

  4. Eileen Samitz

    Don,

    Of all people, I find it surprising that your comment tries to diminish the drought and what California has been suffering though for so many years.

    Second, I don’t understand how you can say that reducing the enrollment at UCD would not help improve the housing shortage. It is just logical that, yes, it would help diminish the housing need. Also, it is notable that UCD admitted more non-residents than any other UC this year to acquire the triple tuition. Yet UCD doesn’t even have enough housing for California resident students no less the enormous number of non-residents they are recruiting (for revenue) to an already seriously overcrowded campus.

    1. Don Shor

      Of all people, I find it surprising that your comment tries to diminish the drought and what California has been suffering though for so many years.

      My comment is accurate. We are no longer in a drought emergency. Your statement was not accurate. We were in an official drought, and we no longer are. I don’t know why you are even arguing this point.

      Second, I don’t understand how you can say that reducing the enrollment at UCD would not help improve the housing shortage.

      UCD is not going to “reduce enrollment.” My comment was about their enrollment increase. There’s a difference. They’ve already met a large percentage of the increase of the 2020 Initiative. They can’t dial back the increase they’ve already achieved. I consider it unlikely that they will reduce their proposed remainder of that increase, or that which is outlined in the LRDP through 2027, but we can certainly see if they would agree to decelerate the pace of enrollment increase.
      But no, reducing the increase in enrollment will not improve the present housing shortage. It would just keep things from getting worse.
      My main point is that campus housing generally follows enrollment increases, it doesn’t precede them, for budgetary reasons. It is possible that the chancellor can override that general situation, and that would also be worth discussions at the council/UCD level.
      There are things that can be done going forward. I don’t believe that we can mitigate what’s already happened. Blocking apartment projects in town will just make everything worse.

    2. Ron

      Don:  “My comment is accurate. We are no longer in a drought emergency. Your statement was not accurate. We were in an official drought, and we no longer are. I don’t know why you are even arguing this point.”

      Yeah – good thing that this is “permanently” behind us.  Probably won’t happen again in our lifetimes.  🙂

      1. Don Shor

        Yeah – good thing that this is “permanently” behind us. Probably won’t happen again in our lifetimes. 🙂

        I didn’t say or even imply, that, Ron. We have a long history of floods and droughts and need to plan for both. In the four decades+ that I’ve lived here, we’ve had three major droughts and a number of flood years. Of those, two of the droughts resulted in official drought emergency declarations, one of which significantly affected us. In the 1976-7 drought Davis only had to cut water use by 10%. 1988 – 92 did not, if I recall, require any specific reduction in water use.
        I should add that thanks to our diversity of water sources, Davis is well set to weather (pun intended) any drought. But we can still be subject to state drought emergency declarations.

        1. Ron

          Don:  I realize you don’t say or imply that.  🙂

          On a broader level, 40 million people in California (and counting).  As time goes on, I suspect that more and more water will be diverted from farming to cities.  (Especially since cities are also consuming farmland.) But, even increased density increases demand.

    3. Howard P

      If one believes the shower theory, that more showers discourage water conservation, perhaps we should design all housing such that there are only enough showers available per person, so everyone has to schedule a 2 minute shower at least 24 hours in advance.

      The whole theory that more bathrooms create additional water use is ludicrous.  Showers don’t use water… people showering use water.

      Toilets similarly… doesn’t matter how long you sit on ‘the throne’, unless you are weird and flush every two minutes, needed or not.

      Using the water waste theory on # of bathrooms is insane… or at least extremely bogus.

      Note on another thread, the guest speaker apparently has a slide showing a 900 SF apartment with two bedrooms, two baths, I grew up in a 850 SF house, 2 Bd/1Ba. Showering/baths were not the issue… urgent “urges” to defecate/pee were, very occaisionally.

        1. Howard P

          Clarification… lack of “individual unit” metering… MF is on meters, with domestic and irrigation on separate meters.  City will not read the individual meters per unit.  That will be up to the manager/owner to read and/or segregate costs… good luck on that being effective, plus the additional costs to re-plumb (existing units), add/read/maintain/replace/account for water use, for separate unit metering and billing.

          So much for keeping things affordable for a potential minor gain in conservation.

          Perhaps there should be a separate meter for every single shower/tub, faucet, washer unit, all to be privately installed/replaced/maintained/read/billed!  That would be accountability!  And would amount to a pixel in a tapestry of water use.

        2. Eileen Samitz

          David and Howard,

          Here is the quote again from the UCD student resident interviewed by the Sac Bee article on UCD’s West Village failing at its sustainability goals.

          “I take pretty long showers and always keep the lights on (who pays $850 a month for a single bedroom). There’s no incentive to conserve. Of course they’re not getting zero net energy.”

           

        3. Ron

          Wondering what price (e.g., per gallon, or other unit) is charged to apartment complexes, vs. single-family dwellings.  In other words, are apartments charged less for water usage in the first place?  (That seems to be the “trend” regarding a number of costs which are disproportionately allocated to single-family dwellings.)

          Note that landscape watering, for example, does not generally impact sewer systems.

          I realize this might involve some calculations to separate out fixed, vs. variable costs.  Not sure if I’ll look at that, when I have more time.

        4. Howard P

          Eileen… you cite “a pixel”.  Your arguments on water and energy use, based on # of bathrooms per unit, is still fallacious and bogus, and am pretty damn sure you know that.

          It is individual behavior.

        5. Steve Westhoff

          I’m having trouble responding directly below the pertinent comment, but Rob, multi-family variable water rates are slightly higher than for single-family per ccf [centum cubic feet or 748 gallons]).  I imagine multi-family service connections also have larger  water meters, therefore higher base rates.  (http://documents.cityofdavis.org/Media/Default/Documents/PDF/CityCouncil/CouncilMeetings/Agendas/20171205/05D-Water-Cost-of-Service-Update.pdf.)

          Multi-family customers consume far less water in the aggregate than single-family customers.  (http://cityofdavis.org/city-hall/public-works/water/production-and-consumption.). I’m fairly certain they also have lower per capita consumption, and that number of bathrooms per occupant wouldn’t necessarily change that significantly.  But I am interested in seeing that data also.

        6. Howard P

          Don… two technical clarifications…

          Storm drains and sanitary drains are technically ‘sewer’ systems… PW folk call them Storm Sewer and Sanitary Sewer.  Gravity.  Not sources for potable water.  “Waste”.

          Second is that landscape irrigation water, if done/operated correctly/ideally enter neither system.  The water goes to ground.  To irrigate.

          1. Don Shor

            Second is that landscape irrigation water, if done/operated correctly/ideally enter neither system. The water goes to ground. To irrigate.

            LOL. Yeah.

        7. Howard P

          Don, please re-read my caveat…

          if done/operated correctly/ideally enter neither system.

          Yeah, too many idiots… we both know the type.

          You are correct that far too much irrigation water is ‘wasted’… see most farm or other agricultural uses and the pollutants they share downstream… LOL…

        8. Ron

          With the cost of water these days, I doubt that many single-family dwellings “waste” a lot of water, down storm drains.  Especially since they are charged based upon usage.

          If one wants to argue that landscaping is a “waste” of water, that does seem like a strange argument from anyone, let alone someone who owns a nursery.  Do we really want a town without landscaping (and ultimately without yards) to accommodate maximum density and resulting limitations?  Is that the goal, here?  Well, I guess we’d better have some parks, then.  (Which also use water.) Seems like a rather dark future.

          In any case, lawns and other high-water use landscaping are being replaced, around the city.  (A trend that will continue, as water usage costs continue to rise.)

           

          1. Don Shor

            If one wants to argue that landscaping is a “waste” of water, that does seem like a strange argument from anyone, let alone someone who owns a nursery.

            Once again, Ron, I never said nor implied anything like that. I really don’t understand how you come up with things like this.

        9. Ron

          Howard:  “Second is that landscape irrigation water, if done/operated correctly/ideally enter neither system. The water goes to ground. To irrigate.”

          Don:  “LOL. Yeah.”

          Howard (somewhat contradicting his first statement):  “Yeah, too many idiots… we both know the type.”

          “You are correct that far too much irrigation water is ‘wasted’… see most farm or other agricultural uses and the pollutants they share downstream… LOL…”

          Glad to see that you’re both “laughing”, though.  I’ll add my smiley face, as well.  🙂
          Have a good evening.

  5. David Greenwald

    “My article is clear on what it is advocating for, and that is for building more apartments but using a design that works for non-students including local workers and families, as well as students.  I find it astonishing that you continue to throw local and workers and families under-the-bus regarding their need for apartments.”

    I’m going to focus on this because I think it’s critical.

    The problem with what you are advocating for is that if they build 1, 2, 3 room apartments, who will occupy them?  Students.  Because there are more of them, they can split the rent, and for the most part they are in areas that are “student” areas.

    Second, the problem again with families (and btw you are accusing me of essentially throwing myself under the bus) is affordability and size.  I don’t see market rate apartments meeting the needs of families.  I’d like to get a figure, but I am willing to bet that families occupy an extremely tiny percentage of market rate apartments in davis.

    Until you can address those points adequately, I feel like you are trying to torpedo these projects and truing to force the university (somehow) to build on campus.

    1. Eileen Samitz

      David,

      Until you explain how students will be able to live in unaffordable mega-dorms, I feel like you are torpedoing potential traditional apartment units needed that can be rented by local workers, families or students.

      Also, yes, you are throwing workers and families under-the-bus needing apartments, affordable category or market rate, with your “build luxury mega-dorms for students only” advocacy.

      1. Sean Raycraft

        There are some serious flaws in this reasoning Eileen.

        One: David is not advocating for “students only housing” as you say.

        Two:  Housing catered towards students can house working poor people or young professionals for a few years. Many of my members have lived in those situations and it has worked out well for everyone.

        Three: David is right that students can pool their resources and have four or more incomes to rent a three bedroom apartment, effectively out pricing young families or couples that have one or two incomes.

        Four: I have dedicated my life to advocating for those workers who dont have a seat at the table, particularly here in town, and I dont think David is throwing them under the bus here.

  6. David Greenwald

    “So, David, I also find it hard to believe that you continue with your statements like your ridiculous belief that families do not need apartments, particularly since that is how you and your family lived for years due to the scarcity of affordable rental houses. ”

    It’s important to accurately state my belief which is that families cannot afford to live in market rate apartments in Davis.  I also believe that we should be aiming to provide families with affordable housing and rental condos and townhouses rather than apartments which I do not believe are well-suited for families.

    1. Eileen Samitz

       

      David,

      While I would say that is would be nice if there were lot’s of houses, like yours, that were in the affordable housing category, but the reality is that is just not the case. You were lucky to get one and it took years for you lining in various affordable apartments before you were able to work you way up to an affordable house unit. So it is pretty unkind and irresponsible that you keep on bringing this up because the City is out of land and for affordable housing sites at this point. The sites that are left have been or are being used for higher density low income apartments to house more low income people rather than a few individual affordable houses like yours. So what you are arguing for just is not going to happen and it is more important that what apartments are built be a design that anyone can reside in.

      Your false assumption that you constantly are implying this that these mega-dorm luxury student housing beds will be affordable to students. They are not which became evident at the Lincoln40 discussion at the Social Services meeting.

       

  7. David Greenwald

    “Finally, your other absurd assumption is that these mega-dorm apartments will be “affordable”. These mega-dorm luxury student apartments will not be affordable and that was evident at the Social Services Commission meeting.”

    One thing that I know ISN’T affordable is the current housing market.  Will adding 4500 beds to the city make it more affordable?  Hard to know.  But the current situation is bad.  I have yet to talk to a single student who is against these projects.

    1. Eileen Samitz

      David,

      You constantly try to avoid talking about the unaffordability of these mega-dorm units. Building 5,000-6,000 unaffordable student mega-dorm beds will not help this situation.

  8. Ron

    David:  “I’d like to get a figure, but I am willing to bet that families occupy an extremely tiny percentage of market rate apartments in davis”.

    Just to clarify, I understand that Eileen is referring to local workers (e.g., single people and/or couples), those sharing an apartment with roommates (not necessarily students), small families (perhaps without a large number of children, single parents, etc.).

    Also, I agree with Eric’s comment above, in which he noted that your questioning of Eileen’s motives/sincerity is unwarranted (and frankly damages the reputation of the Vanguard, in my opinion).

    1. David Greenwald

      The reason I have not referenced local workers is that they fall into overlapping categories.  Younger workers will live in places more like students often sharing a room.  Sean Raycraft can talk more about this.  Older workers are probably families.

  9. Eileen Samitz

    David,

    Seriously? So again, you try to side-step the issue about the need for apartments by non-students. There is a significant demand for apartments for working people, including couples and small families including single parents, who need an apartment to themselves since sharing an apartment would not work for them.

      1. Howard P

        I actually do… but it would take a change in marketing… I do believe there is a place for both market and affordable housing for singles, couples, and young families with infants/toddlers, young children.  It has existed before in Davis… there are also single/two parent families where the child is older… a lot of them historically in East Davis along Eighth street.

        1. Ron

          Still repeating that 85% number, without support.  And regardless, still advocating for the percentage to increase, as a result of the megdorm proposals. 

          A “cascading series of crises” awaits, as another commenter once said (in regard to a somewhat similar issue). That’s what usually happens, when one advocates a piecemeal approach to planning, without understanding or acknowledging the consequences.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            Came from the 2010 Census data, you could look up my initial post on it or do your own homework. I consider you dishonest when you continue to harp on this even though I have explained it multiple times.

        2. Ron

          Once again, you did not respond to the point I made.  (While simultaneously stating that you consider me to be dishonest, regarding that point.)

          Is this really what the Vanguard has come to, now?

        3. David Greenwald

          We can use the census data to infer a fairly accurate estimate of the student rental population.  I actually believe that 85% is a low figure because the census data is from 2010, nearly 8 years old now and the student population has expanded over that time.  It is an estimate of the student population, but then again, most measures are only estimates.

        4. Ron

          David:  We can use the census data to infer a fairly accurate estimate of the student rental population.”

          I don’t think you can, in the manner in which you’ve done.

          Another point – what is the result of purposefully increasing the percentage, via megadorms?  (Leads back to Eileen’s point, regarding not providing housing that is suitable for a range of populations.) Non-students will make up a smaller and smaller percentage of the rental population. They’ll essentially get pushed out, over time. With no new housing for them. Unlike students, they’re probably not organized enough (as a group) to make their voices sufficiently heard.

          1. Don Shor

            Non-students will make up a smaller and smaller percentage of the rental population. They’ll essentially get pushed out, over time.

            What do you think is happening right now? How will blocking housing projects improve the present situation? Where do you think all these young folks are living right now?

        5. David Greenwald

          You act as though we don’t know what the rental population looks like.  We do.  We actually have some samples from some of the adjacent apartment complexes which are all students at this time.  The data exists independently of that, but confirms our suspicions.

        6. Ron

          You still haven’t explained how you’ve concluded that the census states that 85% of renters are students. Nor have you addressed the ramifications of purposefully increasing the percentage (whatever it currently is). Leading back, once again, to Eileen’s point.

          This is what happens, when you continue to let UCD dictate the needs and goals of city planning.

        7. Eric Gelber

          I’m not sure what census data supports the 85% figure. Using 2015 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates of occupancy characteristics for the 95616 zip code, (https://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=CF ), of rental households, 76.1% are nonfamily households. Of nonfamily rental households, only 60.6% include householders between 15 and 34 year’s of age (which would include most university students). Seems this would yield a reasonable estimate of student-occupied rental units. This is well below an 85% estimate of student-occupied rentals in Davis.

          1. Don Shor

            I happen to have two data points saved that might shed light on this.
            1. http://davismerchants.org/vanguard/UCD%20vs.%20Davis%20Demographics%20-%20%20%202000-2015.jpg
            This is from the campus travel survey in 2015. 66% of students reported living in town, and another 10% out of town.
            2. http://davismerchants.org/vanguard/UCD%20vs.%20Davis%20Demographics%20-%20%20%202000-2015.jpg
            This summary was sent to me to post some time ago for another conversation and I can’t remember who sent it. 85.6% of UCD student enrollment growth is Davis residents.

        8. Ron

          Ron:  “Non-students will make up a smaller and smaller percentage of the rental population. They’ll essentially get pushed out, over time.”

          Don:  “What do you think is happening right now? How will blocking housing projects improve the present situation? Where do you think all these young folks are living right now?”

          Pretty sure that you know that no one is arguing to “block” housing projects that serve a broader range of populations. In fact, that’s the opposite of what Eileen is stating.

          To some degree, this argument reminds me of the “tech” YIMBY’s in San Francisco, who are pushing out Hispanics in the Mission district, via gentrification.

          If the city doggedly pursues one goal (that in the case could be accommodated by UCD), there will be negative consequences regarding other city goals, whether that’s work-force housing, commercial development, etc. (Not to mention that no one has apparently calculated the long-term financial costs to city, resulting from continuing to blindly accommodate UCD’s plans, as discussed elsewhere on this page.)

          1. Don Shor

            Pretty sure that you know that no one is arguing to “block” housing projects that serve a broader range of populations.

            Per Eileen:

            Lincoln40 would shoehorn 708 students into 130 apartments on East Olive Drive, causing enormous traffic impacts — including bike and pedestrian — on the congested Richards Boulevard corridor.
            Plaza 2555 on Chiles Road in South Davis proposes 554 beds. Those student residents would need to cross Interstate 80 and also impact the Richards corridor. Rezoning of this commercial parcel to residential is an economic development contradiction by eliminating a site needed for a revenue-generating commercial project.
            The new Nishi project proposes 2,600 beds. Yet air quality health impacts and massive infrastructure problems from its former version have not been resolved. It is another economic development contradiction, with developers having eliminated the innovation park component.

            Are you telling me that she would support these projects if the apartments were configured differently? Would you?

        9. Ron

          Don:  I can’t answer for Eileen, but I usually support her vision and goals.

          Regarding individual proposals, I would generally not argue against them if they didn’t worsen the city’s financial status, compromise other needs that might be better uses for a particular site, or consist of exclusionary housing that could be accommodated on campus. In other words, I’d prefer to follow an actual and sound plan, rather than simply react to the latest crisis. As previously noted, there are consequences resulting from “crisis planning”. (We could discuss this in more detail regarding each site, but I’m not sure that you’re interested.)

          Regarding Nishi, it’s lost the revenue-generating (and cost-offsetting) innovation center component (which was a primary justification for the proposal in the first place).  In addition, there seems to be a group of folks who are actively resisting the recommendation to conduct adequate testing of air quality, on-site.  I’d suggest addressing both of those concerns, before proceeding.

        10. Ron

          By the way, it’s only a matter of time before the Vanguard decides to focus on another city “crisis” (financial in nature), which apparently will be made that much worse if these types of proposals are approved.

          Or, perhaps the Vanguard will turn its attention to the lack of housing for workers, families, etc. (Another “crisis” that will occur, in the absence of sound planning.)

          A “cascading series of crises”, as another commenter once said (regarding a similar issue/approach to planning).

          Pretty sure that there are other “crises” waiting to arise, as well.

        11. Eric Gelber

          Using Davis, CA as the community instead of just zip code 95616, the numbers are even lower for estimated student rentals: Of rental households, only 71.5% are nonfamily households. And, of those, only 53.9% have a household member age 15-34. So, if my assumptions are correct, it appears the estimated percentage of rentals by students is not even close to 85%. It may be less than half that.

          If I’m misinterpreting the data, feel free to let us know.

      2. Eileen Samitz

        David,

        Wow…so as far as you are concerned…no apartments should be built for families or workers. This is pretty important for everyone to understand your position on this issue.

        For the record, I completely disagree with you on this.

        1. David Greenwald

          As Howard points out – that is not what I said.

          What I have said is:

          1. Market rate apartments are going to be difficult to make affordable for families

          2. The shortage of student housing means that even if you build to size and scale for families, students are still likely to rent them.

          There is no “should” there, it a matter of a being a difficult market for family apartments that are market rate.

        2. Ron

          Again, you’re ignoring other workers, couples, etc.  Also, not every family is large, nor is every renter (including families) necessarily low-income.

          If there was no market for non-student rentals, we wouldn’t have Trackside. Nor would we have as much interest in densifying downtown.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            Addressing biggest need doesn’t mean you’re ignoring other needs. As I have pointed out several times to Eileen and she has refused to address it – right now the student market is so pent up, that students are going to rent the housing you build – period.

        3. Richard McCann

          The housing market is largely fungible, most especially for students. They don’t care if they live in an apartment or a bedroom in their house. What the new apartment buildings do is move students out of single family rentals. That will then relieve rental pressure on single-family housing, and that market segment will become more affordable to families. So building for the dominant, most impacted market segment, it will roll through to affect the other related housing markets.

          It’s one thing to have the market assess whether it’s financially viable to build an apartment building that attracts a broader market vs forcing someone to build an apartment building regardless of whether its financially feasible. In general, government agencies are very poor at assessing market potential and economic viability for new projects, especially when the decision makers have no unique expertise on the particularly subject matter. Government is good at putting parameters on the decisions, but should not be making the specific decisions.

        4. Sean Raycraft

          David,

          Wow…so as far as you are concerned…no apartments should be built for families or workers. This is pretty important for everyone to understand your position on this issue.

          For the record, I completely disagree with you on this.

          Youre literally gaslighting David here. Youre deliberately mis representing David’s stated position, over and over again, then quite publicly simultaneously denouncing the made up position, then opposing it yourself.

          Moreover, this is disingenuous coming from you. Youre already opposing 2555 Cowell, which has a variety of housing types, from condos, to small homes to standard apartments and yes units you would describe as mega dorms.

  10. Ron

    Regarding megadorms (or any large-scale apartment complex), there doesn’t seem to be any complete analysis which shows the long-term costs to the city.  In her letter to the Enterprise, Eileen appears to cite the same “analysis” (regarding Sterling) that David presented in the Vanguard, some time ago.  Although that analysis showed an ever-increasing loss (starting in year 15), we still don’t know the source of that analysis, or any information to describe what the revenues and costs consist of.

    For example, we don’t know if the “revenues” are equivalent to the full (100%) of property taxes that will be paid, vs. the 18.6% that will ultimately be received by the city.  (Quite a difference between those two amounts, to say the least.)  We also don’t know if the costs were properly allocated (since they were never defined in the first place).

    Seems odd for the city to proceed with all of these proposed developments, possibly without even adequately understanding the long-term costs to the city. (As a side note, “opportunity costs”, resulting from the loss of commercial space should also be considered.)

     

     

    1. Howard P

      Perhaps there is no complete analyses of “Mega-dorms” as it is a coined phrase by an individual, picked up by a few, and no generally accepted definition?

      Nah, that would be too logical.

      1. Ron

        Howard:  The “name” of these proposed developments is far less important than an actual analysis of costs and impacts. (However, the name does define the intended customers and elements of the physical structure.)

        Engaging in lengthy, nonsensical arguments regarding what to call these proposals is a sure way to deflect from actual concerns, and is a colossal waste of time and energy.

        1. Howard P

          What definition?  I call dissembling …

          (However, the name does define the intended customers and elements of the physical structure.)

          Please define the highlighted terms… from your perspective.

        2. Ron

          To get back to the point, I’ll just copy and paste my comment from above. Such proposals include Sterling, Lincoln40, Plaza 2555, Nishi. . .

          Regarding megadorms (or any large-scale apartment complex), there doesn’t seem to be any complete analysis which shows the long-term costs to the city.  In her letter to the Enterprise, Eileen appears to cite the same “analysis” (regarding Sterling) that David presented in the Vanguard, some time ago.  Although that analysis showed an ever-increasing loss (starting in year 15), we still don’t know the source of that analysis, or any information to describe what the revenues and costs consist of.

          For example, we don’t know if the “revenues” are equivalent to the full (100%) of property taxes that will be paid, vs. the 18.6% that will ultimately be received by the city.  (Quite a difference between those two amounts, to say the least.)  We also don’t know if the costs were properly allocated (since they were never defined in the first place).

          Seems odd for the city to proceed with all of these proposed developments, possibly without even adequately understanding the long-term costs to the city. (As a side note, “opportunity costs”, resulting from the loss of commercial space should also be considered.)

    2. David Greenwald

      Ron: You write it seems odd that the city proceed without adequately understanding the long-term costs to the city.  First of all, you are assuming the “without” portion.  Second even if we grant that point (which I do not) the city still have the critical “needs” calculation that probably would outweigh the  issue of cost.

      To put this another way you are actually balancing the fiscal costs of this sort of housing (again if it is a cost) against the costs of not having sufficient housing.

      1. Ron

        David:  Please let us know when you’re better-able to explain that chart, regarding Sterling (e.g., the source, the costs, and the revenues).  I’ve been asking you to do so, for some time.

        Regarding fiscal costs, that is a city issue (by definition).  Student housing needs, while important, are not necessarily a city-wide issue. (Especially since UCD is solely responsible for creating the need, without much consideration for the city as a whole.) Some seem to think that other city needs and pre-existing plans should be continually sacrificed, as a result. And, some of those needs include consideration of non-students, who might need a place to live.

        1. Mark West

          Ron: “Student housing needs, while important, are not necessarily a city-wide issue.”

          Appropriate housing for all residents, regardless of classification, is a city-wide issue.

           

        2. Ron

          Mark:  You are correct.  I should have clarified that the issue does not impact everyone (or the entire city) in the same manner, compared to fiscal concerns. However, there is a difference of opinion regarding the options and actions that the city should take.  Sound city planning cannot occur, if the city continually disregards its other needs.

        3. Ron

          And, in the case of the megadorm proposals, sites are being sacrificed that could be used to provide housing for all types of residents, “regardless of classification”.

  11. Kirsten Olson

    I am a recent former student. The biggest problem is that there isn’t enough housing in Davis, period. Building more housing that is appropriate for everyone is important. However, housing for students is the first and most important task, because they are the overwhelming majority of the Davis rental market, and will continue to be, regardless of how much complaining and arguing goes on. Please stop that and deal constructively with the problem (pun intended).

    Until there is enough housing for students, the rental market here will continue to be awful for everyone but landlords. The rental horror stories on the student housing page on Facebook are just obscene, especially for people renting houses – rats, broken stoves, no heat, broken plumbing, etc. I had a friend who paid 1150/month for a 1 bedroom dump with a nearly useless, expensive A/C and management that dragged their feet for weeks/months to fix anything. The complex laundry room had 2 washers and 2 dryers, and 1 of the washers was always broken. I live in a decent place with good management, but they raise the rent every year just like everyone else. This year my 2 bedroom is $1560 – and that’s the lower price for renewal tenants!

    Of course UCD needs to build more student housing, but so does the city. Students spend a fortune in this town; it isn’t too much to ask for decent and semi-affordable places to live. Students only pay these insane rents because they are a captive audience. And they double up and then some to “afford” it – 4 to 5 people in a 2 bed, 6 to 8 people crammed into 4 bedrooms. No wonder complexes with a high density of undergrads tend to be noisy at all hours.

    Davis is a lovely town in a lot of ways, but you simply aren’t going to get many families willing to pay these rents for what you have to put up with here. I’m twice as old as most undergrads, so a “mega dorm” sounds awful to me, but it would meet the needs of a LOT of undergrads. DON’T build any more poorly designed and poorly managed wanna-be luxury complexes like West Village. But please, hurry up and DO build more decent affordable housing specifically designed for students AND more housing appropriate for everyone.

    1. John Hobbs

      “Building more housing that is appropriate for everyone is important. However, housing for students is the first and most important task, because they are the overwhelming majority of the Davis rental market,”

      OMG, the voice of reason!

    2. Eileen Samitz

      Kristen,

      Since your have graduated, I imagine that you may be moving toward employment I think that you may be less likely to want to live in a mega-dorm yourself, particularly for instance, if let’s say you were married. The reason I say this is because it is the format of so many mega-dorms rent-by-the-bed situation is the problem due to its exclusionary design.

      In contrast, if instead, 1-2-and 3- bedroom apartments are built, this format suits all, workers, families, and students. So that is the issue and why mega-dorms are not a solution in the City, but building more traditional 1-, 2- and 3- bedroom apartments are.

  12. Michael Bisch

    This ongoing argument throughout these threads that the prudent approach to the housing crises is to not increase supply is beyond absurd. “Let’s not build it because of this. Let’s not build it because of that.” It’s like listening to someone run their fingernails down a chalkboard.

  13. Eileen Samitz

    Kristen,

    The issue is building inclusionary housing by design like traditional 1-,2- and 3- bedroom apartments that works for everyone including workers, families and students is the solution, not exclusionary housing like luxury, mega-dorms which rent-by-the bed which does not work for workers or families, or even for many students since they will not be more affordable.

    1. Sean Raycraft

      How are these “mega dorms” exclusionary? How does the “mega dorm” format exclude workers? (I know this to be factually incorrect, as many of my members live in these kinds of places)

      Im not even super pro “mega dorm”, frankly I am somewhat ambivalent about them, but what I do object to is this narrative your trying to build that is patently and provably false. Primarily that these projects are inherently exclusionary to working poor people and young professionals, because they arent.

  14. Richard McCann

    Eric, I think we have the info to calculate the share of student rentals. You can’t just use the Census data because many students are listed at their parents’ residence in the Census rather than in Davis. You need to make your equations balance between the Census data and the UCD report on students renting in Davis.

    1. Sean Raycraft

      When doing research for the 15$ minimum wage campaign in town several years ago, we tried mining the census for data, with some mixed results. Too much of the data is now 8 years old, and so much of the poverty data for example is based on the county, which clearly doesnt represent Davis. What I can say for sure is that anecdotally, the rental market has gotten much worse in the last five years for my members and students.

    2. Eric Gelber

      Richard – I agree that it’s messy and not always clear where college students are to be counted. Residence listed for other purposes (e.g., voter registration) is not necessarily where they would be counted for the census, however. Under current census rules, most college student should be counted at their college address. See, http://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2010/03/15/college-students-count-in-the-census-but-where/. As noted, however, there’s confusion, and some are counted twice. But I don’t know that it can be said that a significant number are counted only at their parents’ address even if they spend the majority of the year living away from home, particularly if they are renting off campus.

       

      1. Howard P

        My understanding, too, Eric, at least in theory (don’t know about the practice), the Census is designed to be a “snapshot in time”… nothing more, nothing less.  Not saying it’s perfect, but yes, all “measurements” have their limitations and caveats.  The best the Census can be, is to be a realistic approximation of what “is on the ground”, particularly given its funding.

        You want precision, you hire a land surveyor.  They measure things down to 0.1 minutes of angle (one minute is one 60th of one 60th of a degree of angle), one 1000th of a foot for distance (usually only reported out as to nearest 100th (~ 1/8 inch).  They used to use “RCH” as the finest measurement possible.

        The Census is a useful but somewhat blunt tool, in comparison.

    1. Eric Gelber

      Can someone explain to me why in a city where over a third of the population are students, its somehow bad to build rentals that cater to them?

      I think the the question is, with limited suitable sites for multi-family housing construction within the city, to what extent should off-campus housing be built that caters ONLY to students.

      1. Don Shor

        I think the the question is, with limited suitable sites for multi-family housing construction within the city, to what extent should off-campus housing be built that caters ONLY to students.

        I think the question is whether the city planning process should dictate the number of beds in a unit and try to tell the developers to whom they should market their housing.

        1. Howard P

          And I believe that question should be answered, firmly, in the negative. Even more so if someone wants to have the city regulate how many people per bed!

          Beds do not create impacts… people do!

        2. Ron

          Don:  “I think the question is whether the city planning process should dictate the number of beds in a unit and try to tell the developers to whom they should market their housing.”

          I think the question is whether the city planning process should continue to be dictated by development proposals which don’t necessarily adhere to the city’s pre-existing plans, zoning, or goals.

    2. Howard P

      Think Eric nails it… student housing should be like all housing… proportional to situational needs… those who insist on all student, or all anything, are missing the point, in my opinion.

      To paraphrase, “there is a time for every housing under the heavens”… balance is tricky… I support the concepts (not necessarily the specifics of) current proposals to deal with the current lack of housing opportunities… be they student, singles, seniors, affordable, homeless, etc.

      I think only the worshippers of the Goddess “Stasis” oppose new housing with the vehemency that some do.

       

  15. Sean Raycraft

    This ongoing argument throughout these threads that the prudent approach to the housing crises is to not increase supply is beyond absurd. “Let’s not build it because of this. Let’s not build it because of that.” It’s like listening to someone run their fingernails down a chalkboard.

    I tend to agree.

  16. Cindy Pickett

    If I am serving dinner to 50 different people, I could be inclusionary by making sure that every dish served could be eaten by every diner despite varying food preferences, allergies, etc. OR, I could meet those diners’ needs (and be inclusionary), by offering a variety of dishes — meat, vegan, gluten-free, etc. — so that, overall, each diner gets to eat.
    I think our shared goal is making sure that everyone gets to eat, but we don’t agree on the means to that end.
     

    1. Michael Bisch

      A 0.2% vacancy rate is telling you that nowhere near enough food is being served. A number of your 50 diners are not getting any food at all and a large percentage of the remaining diners are malnurished. Meanwhile, a significant minority of the diners are getting plenty of food at your party and are well nourished. They quite like your dinner party. And some of these well nourished diners have explicitly told your malnourished guests that they need to dine elsewhere. Yet other well nourished diners have repeatedly placed such conditions on the malnourished guests dining at your house that these malnourished guests are forced to leave.

      All the while extra catering trucks are lined up outside your house, but you won’t let them unload the food.

        1. Ron

          Hence the need to ensure that ANY new residential development includes an adequate contribution toward Affordable housing.  (Including “mixed use”, which is currently exempt from those requirements.)

          And/or, consider rent control to protect those already here, at least.

        2. David Greenwald

          You realize your dancing on the head of a pin.  Adequate contribution toward affordable housing is a marginal impact.  The bigger impact is sheer magnitude.  And I’m not advocating that, only pointing out the inherent contradiction here.

        3. Ron

          Again, not sure of your point.  You’re one of the biggest advocates of Affordable housing, and have stated that it “works” – including for yourself. 

          You also know that housing costs have increased throughout the region, including in areas where there are no “growth controls”.

          Regarding rent control, I’ve seen cases where it’s worked quite well. I know one person who probably pays less in rent than he would in property taxes (alone), if he purchased the property at today’s market rate.

          You’re not only “dancing on the head of a pin” – you’ve already lost your footing and have fallen off that pin.

        4. David Greenwald

          My point is that your proposal “that any new residential development includes an adequate contribution toward Affordable housing” is going to at best have a marginal impact on the amount of affordable housing built – as in less than five units and perhaps as few as one or two.  the bigger impact is having more projects and more larger projects – something that you’re opposed to.  So you’re pretending to care about affordable housing when in fact the totality of your views have a much greater impact on minimizing the amount of housing than any tweak in how housing units are calculated will have.

      1. Cindy Pickett

        LOL! I’m imagining coming to this dinner with a pot of chili that can feed the whole bunch and being told to go home because it’s a mega-pot and only low skillets are allowed. And, of course, it takes a lot of water to wash a mega-pot.

        1. Don Shor

          Well, as long as your chili is vegan and gluten-free and was cooked without using fossil fuels, I’m sure it’ll be fine. We’ll need to set up a commission first to determine which kind of chili peppers to use. I can provide lots of data about capsaicin content and the impact on different age groups based on their tongue receptors.

  17. Sean Raycraft

    Im with you on the stacked mixed use affordable housing exemption. I think we should also consider moving to a by the bedroom contribution to prevent the kind of shenanigans being proposed by current developers. I also think the housing crisis is one of just not enough housing, so the glut of renters is causing market failure.

    1. Michael Bisch

      Let’s be clear here of the outcome of such advocacy. Those that are advocating for removing the affordable housing exemption for vertical mixed-use projects are ensuring that vertical mixed-use projects will not be built in Davis for the next 10-20 years. It’s not as if any are being built any way, so there’s really no impact. On the other hand, vertical mixed-use has been the community vision for decades so your advocacy is remarkably dysfunctional.

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