My View: We Should Not Fear the End of R1 Zoning

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By David M. Greenwald

Davis, CA – As we search for creative ways to expand housing given land use restrictions in Davis, one of the more valuable tools may be to end R1 zoning restrictions that limit lots to single-family homes and allow for duplexes—or in some cases fourplexes—to be built in single-family home neighborhoods.

This has triggered a lot of pushback but a lot of that is based on fear and lack of understanding, rather than a rational understanding of how it would work.  Moreover, it ultimately might be outside of our local control.

As one resident of Rose Creek said, “I am shocked to learn the radical steps being proposed, ending single family housing zoning, and allowing development by right, seems like a really drastic measure. This would result in my neighbors’ houses potentially being purchased by investors, bulldozed and replaced with many apartment complexes all without even a public approval process or any notice to the neighborhood that would devastate our neighborhoods.”

The public commenter conflated a lot of things here.  First, the elimination of R1 zoning would allow for, at most, duplexes or fourplexes.  Second, the city indicated that they were not looking at this for existing neighborhoods but rather new developments.  And third, by right development, if they implemented it, would be based on whatever the current zoning is.  You couldn’t put whatever you want in.

We have seen the argument posed that, if you are an existing resident, it is somehow unfair if you neighbor converts their home into a duplex or a fourplex.

But why?

One argument is: “When people are buying a home in a new community at least they know the rules going in that a single family home next to them could possibly be reconfigured into a fourplex.”

On the other hand, while the city has made some restrictions on mini-dorms, there is practically nothing to stop someone from converting a single family into a student rental housing that could hold 8 to 10 people, without really triggering any of the city’s mini-dorm rules.

Why is this such a concern?  For one thing, we often see duplexes tucked into single-family neighborhoods already.  Moreover, we allow the construction of ADUs or grannyflats, which creates a similar dynamic.  Furthermore, duplexes are permitted in the R-2 and R-2CD districts, which are primarily single family but also allow duplexes as a permitted use.

The city points out, “Well-designed duplexes fit into single-family neighborhoods from a scale and level of intensity standpoint.”

Moreover, the city would not simply be plopping down huge out-of-scale buildings into single-family neighborhoods.

In fact, while a revision of a R1 zoning would occur, the city would still be able to regulate size and scale, so that the level of intensity of a fourplex could be held to the equivalent of perhaps two SFRs, depending on size and number of bedrooms.  A five-bedroom home filled with students could in fact have a much greater impact than a fourplex filled with families better able to afford the purchase, given the size the homes.

Besides, as we saw with Mission Residence, even  without the R1 changes, the city has the ability to approve high-density housing in single-family low density neighborhoods simply by planning by exception.

This may well be the wave of the future anyway, as we look to put more housing on a smaller footprint of land and create the ability to have affordability by design and create housing that would enable more families to live in Davis.

Moreover, as Vice-Mayor Lucas Frerichs pointed out: “[T]his may actually already be something that’s taken out of our hands by the state legislature.”

The bill from Senate President Toni Atkins, SB 9, would automatically allow for duplexes on a single-family zoned lot.  He said that was something that they may not find out until September though.

What is the solution to the housing crisis being proposed by the slow growth advocates here?  They are against various forms of densification such as changing R1 zoning and creating mixed-use neighborhood shopping centers.  They are not in favor of streamlining redevelopment by creating a by-right process.  And they are not interested in amending restrictions on greenfield development.

What does that leave us with?  We are running out of space and running out of options.  Changes to R1 zoning can be done while keeping the core character of neighborhoods intact, and it gives us a tool to slowly convert inefficient low-density neighborhoods into more reasonable accommodations.

—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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37 thoughts on “My View: We Should Not Fear the End of R1 Zoning”

  1. Keith Olsen

    First, the elimination of R1 zoning would allow for, at most, duplexes or fourplexes.

    Yeah, why should a homeowner fear having a fourplex go in right next door to their single family home  in a R1 neighborhood?  They’re just being irrational.

    On the other hand, while the city has made some restrictions on mini-dorms, there is practically nothing to stop someone from converting a single family into a student rental housing that could hold 8 to 10 people, without really triggering any of the city’s mini-dorm rules.

    A five-bedroom home filled with students could in fact have a much greater impact than a fourplex filled with families better able to afford the purchase, given the size the homes.

    Oh, the it could be worse argument.

     

     

     

     

      1. Ron Glick

        That is a big if. How do you go from single family to multi-family without changing the size and scale of the neighborhood? You also fail to recognize the potential for cumulative impacts that would surely occur over time as more and more conversions take place.

        1. David Greenwald Post author

          I live in a nine unit, townhouse carve out in a single family neighborhood. It’s fully integrated into the neighborhood and doubt it has much impact at all. We are already allowing ADUs and mini-dorms into our neighborhoods. I agree that it is a big if, they do have to be well-designed and integrated into the neighborhood.

        2. Alan Miller

          fail to recognize the potential for cumulative impacts that would surely occur over time as more and more conversions take place.

          So true, RG.  Having been at this game a long time, we’ve seen projects OK’d with staff reports justifying by what is next door as precedent and just one step up – but it won’t hurt the neighborhood – and years later the step-up becomes the precedent next door that one steps up from.  It’s part of the game.  The dirty dirty game.

        3. Keith Olsen

          In fact, while a revision of a R1 zoning would occur, the city would still be able to regulate size and scale, so that the level of intensity of a fourplex could be held to the equivalent of perhaps two SFRs, depending on size and number of bedrooms.

          Being a stock investor, words like could and should are always skeptically viewed in press releases.  For instance, the stock might soar if we could institute a plan.

    1. Alan Miller

      On my block (one single block), there is single-family housing, cooperative housing, a small, three-story apartment complex, and a duplex.   About 80% of the problems in the neighborhood that comes from within the neighborhood (noise issues, parking in no parking areas, problem visitors, drunk and wreckless driving, petty vandalism, etc.) come from the apartment complex, about 15% come from the so-called ‘duplex’, (five bedrooms each side) that we later found each had a ‘den’ that of course students rent as a bedroom, and about 5% from the houses and cooperatives.   Other than the duplex having been less of a problem the last few years, this has been consistent between the apartment and the rest of the neighborhood for nearly 35 years – probably much longer as my sister lived on this block in the early 70’s and noted the same apartment building being a problem too, with a fire there killing one.

      For those who wonder why . . .

      1. Richard_McCann

        So the problem is almost certainly not the type of housing but rather the age of the residents, with those who are younger causing more of the “issues.” And the solution proposed by those who are older is to keep out those who are younger.

        1. Ron Oertel

          That certainly wouldn’t explain my views.

          You probably could have filmed my response every 7 years throughout my lifetime, and would have found a remarkable consistency. (I picked “7”, because there’s some kind of a film like that, as I recall.)

          Though my views are more related to sprawl, than density.

          Of course, the views of (some) might also be influenced by the groups that they’re associating with such as the YIMBYs, Spafford and Lincoln, etc.

          You know, the types who claim to be concerned about housing shortages and global warming, but then turn around and support a peripheral freeway-oriented development, with thousands of parking spaces and exacerbation of “housing shortages” – if it was actually viable.

        2. Ron Oertel

          Unasked, I will provide an example of the reason that density makes life more challenging for existing residents. Even though I find this less-objectionable than sprawl.

          When I was younger, there was a medium-sized “semi-gourmet” grocery store in the neighborhood where I grew up.  I believe it was an independent operation, or at least not a large chain.

          My parents and grandparent used to shop at that store.

          Perhaps 30 years ago, they knocked it down, put the parking underground (where it was hugely inconvenient to access), and built condos or apartments above it. Sometimes, the entrance itself is blocked by traffic, impacted by double-parkers, or by those entering/exiting. I’m not sure if anyone in my family ever actually tried using the dungeon that they relegated parking to, or whether or not it was sufficient.

          That pretty much put an end to my family’s patronage of that store.  However, I assume that the store owners were perfectly happy with the result, despite the effective loss of the store to serve locals.  (With the exception of those living upstairs, walking past it, or those living within walking distance.)  Of course, the owners realized massive profits from the housing, so the “grocery” part of their business was increasingly unimportant, in their scheme of things.

          Now, how that “improves” things overall escapes me.

  2. Keith Olsen

     it gives us a tool to slowly convert inefficient low-density neighborhoods into more reasonable accommodations

    Who knew their single family home neighborhood is inefficient and should be more reasonable?

  3. Ron Glick

    “This has triggered a lot of pushback but a lot of that is based on fear and lack of understanding, rather than a rational understanding of how it would work.”

    Or maybe its based on empirical experience, such as my own in Los Angeles in the early 70’s, as I watched the evolution of my West Los Angeles neighborhood get converted one parcel at a time from single family to multi-family housing. That experience has guided my  consistent argument that we should go out instead of up and my staunch opposition to the barriers we have put forward to annexation.

    The staff proposal to only get rid of R-1 for new development would make perfect sense if it wasn’t for measure D just as the argument to keep R-1 in existing neighborhoods fails because of measure D.

    Measure D, that you supported, continues to be the chokehold that restricts a rational housing policy in the city of Davis and people who don’t want to densify their neighborhoods are not naive.

  4. Ron Oertel

    The public commenter conflated a lot of things here.  First, the elimination of R1 zoning would allow for, at most, duplexes or fourplexes.  Second, the city indicated that they were not looking at this for existing neighborhoods but rather new developments.  And third, by right development, if they implemented it, would be based on whatever the current zoning is.

    Let’s unpack this.

    R-1 currently allows for a house, an ADU and a JADU 3 possible residences. R-2 allows for 2 houses, an ADU and a JADU, 4 possible residences. Suspension of R-1 as proposed by Yolo Growth does not define how many units will allowed, so it depends what replaces it. Other communities have found it can mean up to 8 units on a formerly single family lot. There is no definition to the YIMBY proposal that limits this to “quadplexes” as David falsely claims. The commenter had good reason to object to more than quads.

    The city indicated that they are not looking at this for existing neighborhoods” and the city has not indicated that it is looking at this at all.

    Some council people talked about it but it was pretty clear there was little desire to remove R-1 and staff is not proposing it. On the other hand, Yolo Growth and the HEC is proposing it genetically for all neighborhoods so the commenter had good reason to object to it in their neighborhood.

    “By right development would be based on whatever the zoning was” and if you couple that with the YIMBY proposal to get rid of R-1 for the whole city then yes, it could mean 4 or even 8 units being built with ministerial approval in formerly single family neighbor hoods.

    Altogether the quoted comments are extremely misleading.

  5. Dan Cornford

    I want to raise a much larger question or issue:  It seems likely that some version of SB 9 and10 will pass effectively ending single family zoning in CA—whatever Davis does.  How many people have thought about the massive political backlash at the state level, and far far beyond that, that this could cause, not so much in Davis, but yes here too.
     
     Over 100  CA cities and towns are on record as opposing the abolition  of R1 zoning!   David, do you really think that if the issue were put to a vote in Davis anything like a majority of Davis voters would approve the end of R1 zoning???  A statewide poll found that only 28% of people supported it.
    Sure the Republicans, statewide and nationally, purport to be anti-regulation, but they rightly see a huge opportunity here for massive voter backlash—and backlash at supposed “progressive” YIMBY Dems which Newsom et al. will have rightly be seen as has having caved into.
    Anyone remember the 2020 presidential campaign and Trump trying to make the most of the fact that CA would abolish single family zoning?   (Google it if you don’t believe me). Think that won’t happen again even if it is not Trump?  I even wonder how this could affect Newsom’s recall election, or his re-election in 2022. 
    For the primary umbrella organizations opposing the abolition of RI zoning and related go to:
    https://www.livablecalifornia.org/act-to-oppose-sb-9-and-sb-10/
    https://www.unitedneighbors.net/ 
    If this all seems too abstruse  and theoretical, let me put it another way:  To begin with circa 90% of Davis and California residents are completely unaware that single family zoning could be abolished where they live. 
    As I put it in an email to a reporter at the Davis Enterprise a few weeks ago: “How many people know that, imminently, SFH zoning could end, both in Davis and statewide; that one day they could wake up to the sound of bulldozers and jackhammers as 2-4 units building  (or even more in some cities) are put up next door to them  (as their former neighbor has sold for top dollar to, knowingly, or unknowingly, a developer)?  
    Whatever your politics, whatever your position on all the DHEC recommendations, does anyone really doubt that the ending of single family zoning, in some form or other,  will not have serious political consequences? 
    Be careful what you wish for!!!
     

    1. David Greenwald Post author

      In terms of public opinion… I think it depends on what the actual policy is. If the policy is ending R1 for future developments, most wont care. If it is ended in existing neighborhoods, there will be more outcry. How deeply will the state law effect the state? It will depend on what they pass – future versus past. As I say here, as long as we keep size and scale, I don’t see a problem with changing R1 zoning.

  6. cornford

    David, as I understand it SB 9, not to mention companion bills (See the link I just posted) WOULD eliminate R! zoning in ALL neighborhoods statewide.  I stand to be corrected but think I am right. 
     
    Please show me I am wrong  Hence the widespread opposition to it by many cities and voters in CA.  Below is an edited version from “Livable California.   Granted it is possible that the assembly could modify this and other bills, but it is unlikely. 
     
    SB 9 passed with an overwhelming majority in the state senate!  But David, if I am right, and that essentially most or all R1 zoning in CA  would be eliminated do you share my concern?  Apparently, from your earlier response, you do.
     
    From Livable California
     
    “SB 9 This divisive bill crushes single-family zoning in California, a threat to 7 million homeowners. Wiener  ( sponsor of the bill) has called yards and single-family homes “immoral.” SB 9 is not a “duplex” bill. It allows 4 market-rate homes where 1 now stands (up to 6 units, if developers use a hidden “two-step” that Livable California volunteer attorneys spotted).” 
     
    If you think that is one side below is an extract from the California YIMBY website: 
     
    SB 9 makes two important changes to state law:
     

    It allows homeowners in most areas around the state to divide their property into two lots, thereby increasing opportunities for homeownership in their neighborhood; and 

     

    It allows two homes to be built on each of those lots, with the effect of legalizing fourplexes in areas that previously only allowed one home.

    1. Eric Gelber

      No. SB 9 would not eliminate R-1 zoning. It would simply require ministerial approval of a duplex on a single lot in an R-1 zone, conditioned on meeting other requirements for the zone. It would also require ministerial approval of lot splitting. Combined, this would allow for a maximum of two duplexes on what was a single parcel.

      Here’s an article on the bill: https://www.davisvanguard.org/2021/05/california-capitol-watch-bill-would-require-ministerial-approval-of-duplexes-and-lot-splitting-in-single-family-zones/

       

      1. Don Shor

        I think we would benefit from a full definition of what ‘ministerial approval’ means. Staff approval? Council voting on each application? Any commission oversight?

        1. Bill Marshall

          Don…

          Ministerial acts are ones that follow established processes and ordinances.  Legislative acts are ones that allow discretion beyond those.

          LLA’s, and most Parcel Maps fall into that category… the Subdivision Committee (3 staff members) approve those, if they meet all the rules… or, are conditioned on meeting all those rules… Subdivision Committee actions can be appealed to PC and/or CC.  Very rare.

          Final Map approvals are ministerial, insofar that all conditions of the Tentative Map have been met… the TM is the discretionary/legislative act… as are DA’s…

          Thumb-nail sketch… with 35 years of experience, can go into FAR more detail, if someone wants to engage me @ $70/hr… will even provide all the legal cites, under local ordinance or State Law… to pursue further, would want an exemption from the 5 comment rule on that particular topic…

      2. Bill Marshall

        It would also require ministerial approval of lot splitting.

        As long as the conditions of approval match those of LLA’s, and the pragmatic matters of ‘subdivisions’ (survey, mapping, utilities, etc.) under the government code (Subdivision Map Act), I see no problems on the zoning aspects…

        Have not drilled down into the legislation… there could be bad “unintended consequences” depending how it is written… the concept is good with me… the possible execution of the ‘concept’ cause me grave concerns, as few folk don’t think of the details of property rights (mapping/deeds), utility services… they operate on the 10,000 foot viewpoint… not “boots on the ground”… where the rubber meets the road…

  7. Eric Gelber

    As an FYI, here’s an article making the case for doing away with R-1 zoning: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/01944363.2019.1651216#_i3

    It’s at least worth considering that R-1 zoning didn’t exist before a 1917 U.S. Supreme Court decision making racial zoning illegal. It was an alternative, legal, way of accomplishing a similar result—exclusion of people less likely to be able to afford a single family home.

    The HEC may have recommended doing away with R-1 zoning but I detected no indication from any Council member that they are inclined to support this proposal as is. Quite the contrary. So, it’s a bit premature to be worried that the sky is falling.

  8. cornford

    And here is a brief summary of some of my (and quite a lot of academics and planners) main arguments as to why abolishing RI will not lead to affordable housing as well as some of the environmental fallout
     
    1)    It would lead to enormous traffic and parking  issues which almost all cities (and the region’s) infrastructure are not equipped to handle.  Already over 100 cities and counties in CA are on record as opposing SB9 and related legislation.
     
    2)     SFH zoning is not the primary driver of high housing prices and factors such as the huge expansion of high tech in the Bay Area are far more accountable.  See, Richard Walker, (Professor of Geography, UC Berkeley), Pictures of a Gone City: Tech and the Dark Side of Prosperity in the San Francisco Bay Area.  (2018).
     
    3)      Since the recession of 2008-09, as several articles have shown in such publications as the NYT and The Atlantic,  REIT’s have played a major role in driving up housing costs and rents.  To take one example, Blackstone’s is the largest private holder of real estate in Sacramento.
     
    4)    Abolishing single family zoning would, in most places  (where there is a high demand for housing), drive up housing prices as housing speculators vie to build more housing while encouraging more hi-tech firms to move or expand to California.  Even areas where high tech is “not a factor,” there would be a massive incentive for developers to buy homes; knock them down and put to 4-6 units driving the price of land and existing “units” up further.    Further, as had been argued by several tenants rights’ organizations in CA, it would lead to the displacement of many tenants as homeowners sell to developers for a handsome profit.   All this is to say nothing of the high cost of building due mostly to labor shortages and an increase in price of “primary” building materials such as lumber.
     
    5)    It should be noted also that fast, and unaffordable house price increases, are not unique to CA, and other states and cities in the CA, but just as much of a problems in many W. European countries, New Zealand, Australia, Canada et al.  So to blame CA Nimby’s, CEQA et al. is largely off the mark.
     
    Yes, I support a strong program of state and federally subsidized  housing, as occurred in W. Europe after WW2. And unlike most of your readers I support giving cities and towns the right to impose their own rent controls and the repeal of Costa-Hawkins.  And no I am not worried about the impact on my home’s value, and nor are most owners that I know.  Note that even the toughest rent controls in places like Berkeley did not apply rent control to new building construction.

    1. Richard_McCann

      Note that even the toughest rent controls in places like Berkeley did not apply rent control to new building construction.

      That’s because of Costa-Hawkins…

  9. Dan Cornford

    To link the exclusionary zoning of the early C20th to the opposition to abolishing R1 zoning  is a sophism of the worst sort and, if you like, a race-baiting tactic in reverse repeatedly  employed by the well-organized YIMBY movement, and their developer backers for many years—and indeed some of our CC members.
     
    You might be surprised to know that many minorities are homeowners living in R1 areas and that they do not all support, by any means, the ending of RI zoning.  See:
     
     
    Oppose SB 9 and SB 10: Why Do Politicians Want to Take Away Homeownership from Communities of Color?
     
    https://www.livablecalifornia.org/why-do-politicians-want-to-take-away-homeownership-from-communities-of-color/

  10. Ron Glick

    “It probably also looks a little different when you are trying to get rather than keep someone out.”

    So now you are accusing one of the longest most outspoken voices in town for additional housing of some sort of exclusionary sentiment. I think you are confusing my understanding of the social dynamics of housing policy with my personal views. So let me try to explain to you why peripheral development under normal circumstances is easier to pass.

    It is almost always easier to develop new projects than it is to redevelop existing areas or do infill. However here in Davis its difficult to do both. With infill you get the usual and normal opposition from neighbors while peripheral development around Davis has been zero since the enactment of Measure J in 2000. As long as Measure D is in effect don’t expect much progress on housing production meeting demand.

     

     

     

  11. Matt Williams

    I’ve been off the grid today on a “bakery crawl” in Albany/Berkeley/Oakland.  I highly recommend all the bakeries in this food blog article, but especially Pâtisserie Rotha in Albany.  Prior to their opening at 8:00 this morning there was a queued-up line of approximately 30 people.  We left Davis at 6:30 to avoid having too many folks ahead of us in line.

    With that said …

    What is the solution to the housing crisis being proposed by the slow growth advocates here?

    .
    David, you clearly haven’t been listening to the slow growth advocates.  Otherwise you wouldn’t ask that question.  Here are the crystal clear solutions that I have heard from the slow growth advocates.

    Keith Echols has made it very clear that he doesn’t see an organic housing crisis in Davis, and that putting the addition of housing first in line is putting the cart before the horse.  He has made the point that any organic incremental housing demand needs to come as a result of economic development events/actions that have added jobs within the City Limits … in such a way that the annual recurring revenues to the City of Davis’ municipal budget exceed the annual recurring services and capital infrastructure maintenance costs throughout the life of the jobs.  Fiscally responsible jobs addition creates organic housing demand.

    Keith has also made it clear that the lion’s share of the marginal housing demand that you and others have argued creates what you believe is a crisis, has been created by UCD’s actions in pursuit of its business plan.

    Eileen Samitz and many other slow growthers join Keith in that belief, and have argued long and hard that UCD needs to build significantly more housing on campus.

    In the recent MOU that UCD signed with Yolo County and the City of Davis, UCD committed to housing 100% of their added enrollment. How have they done so far?

    — UCD’s LRDP includes housing additions back to 2017 (500 added beds at Tercero Phase IV)  The Fall 2017 Enrollment increase was 843, so UCD ended 2017 with a 343 deficit.

    — The Fall 2018 Enrollment increase was 759 and the LRDP shows no added beds, so UCD ended 2018 with an additional 759 deficit.

    — The Fall 2019 Enrollment increase was 307 and the LRDP showed 140 additional beds coming online at Yosemite/Webster Hall and 300 additional beds coming online at West Village under the “double up” program. However the Yosemite/Webster Hall web page (see LINK) shows the new Yosemite Hall bed total as 390 and the old Webster Hall bed total as 266, sot the added beds is only 124, not  140.  Regardless, the 424 bed increase is greater than the 307 Enrollment increase, so the deficit is reduced by 117.

    — The Fall 2020 Enrollment increase was 254 and the LRDP showed 1,000 additional beds coming online at West Village (Phase I of The Green at West Village.  The website for The Green (see LINK) shows a Fall 2020 Transfer student population of 1,005, which exceeds the Enrollment increase by 751.

    So the four years reported by UCD have deficits of 343 and 759, and surpluses of 117 and 751.  Slightly more deficit than surplus, but to be fair, the 2017 figures UCD included really predated the MOU.  If you exclude that first year, then UCD is actually providing beds for 100% of its incremental enrollment since the MOU was agreed to.

    What is missing from the above is any beds that UCD has taken out of service, if any.

    The above analysis also does not look at how UCD has handled pre-MOU Enrollment increases, which were 1,130 in 2016, 722 in 2015, 1,164 in 2014, and 962 in 2013.

    1. Tim Keller

      I totally agree with Keith that growth of housing should only be in response to economic demand,  but it makes zero sense to assert that the market demand isn’t here yet.    It is of course blatantly obvious that we have a severe under-supply across the board.   Just the price differential between woodland or Dixon and Davis is all of the proof you need.    Stating that “there isn’t a problem here” is either severely out of touch, or an admission that one just doesn’t care about the ability of other people to enjoy the same life you do.

      The point about the university needing to take up their share of new student enrollment is appropriate, but it totally ignores another reality which is that the addition of each student probably creates at least one other job in this economy through the multiplier effect.   So even if the university meets its goals for matching the increase in enrollment, it will still never be sufficient.

      Add to that the more affluent people who choose to live here and telecommute, or telecommute, and add to that the people who graduate and become part of the local economy, working in companies started by university researchers.  And add to THAT the people who choose to retire here….   The on-campus housing supply ends up being almost a non-sequiteur.

      The real reason why we shouldn’t worry about R-1 zoning?  Is because the difference it could make relative to the very real housing shortage we have is paltry.  It’s a band-aid, it’s a way of claiming that something is being done while not actually doing that much.

  12. Ron Glick

    “The real reason why we shouldn’t worry about R-1 zoning?  Is because the difference it could make relative to the very real housing shortage we have is paltry.  It’s a band-aid, it’s a way of claiming that something is being done while not actually doing that much.”

    Exactly, so as I have said repeatedly, as long as we have Measure D we won’t solve the problem. In fact the longer we have it the worse it will be for people who grow up here to compete for housing with highly skilled newcomers drawn here for the reason’s Tim articulates above.

    1. Keith Olsen

      Exactly, so as I have said repeatedly, as long as we have Measure D we won’t solve the problem.

      So I take it you don’t like Measure D?

  13. Bill Marshall

    Along the lines of the topic, but different flavor…

    In the late 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, my grandparents took in ‘boarders’… no long term contracts, shelter, kitchen privileges, and, meals… grandparents lived across the street (literally) from Penn State… they had a daughter who was off to a career, a son who was serving in the Pacific… a symbiotic relationship… they ‘rented by the room’ which some here find offensive… the ‘landlords’ (a SF structure/zoning) lived on-site… it was their home… almost always college students were the boarders… led to me getting a personal visit to Eisenhower’s farm in Gettysburg many years later, courtesy a a boarder studying Ag @ Penn State, who went on to manage Ike’s farm…

    The boarders were treated as family, and as the Depression was winding down, it was an economic benefit (and ‘company’) … no problems… win-win, and addressed student housing…

    This “model”, ‘boarders’, has been very absent from the discussion… WHY?

    Is it ‘illegal’ in Davis in a SF situation?

    I suggest this be added to the ‘tool-box’ for ’empty-nesters’ willing/interested to do that, and support from the regulatory side…

  14. Bill Marshall

    Somewhat on topic to this and other recent threads…

    The economy isn’t going back to February 2020. Fundamental shifts have occurred. (msn.com)

    Looks like some will “take it in the shorts” in at least in the near term (2-5 years)… and for SS beneficiaries, they’re good… in the short term… benefits are pretty much inflation-adjusted… for those on other pensions that have 2% caps, not so much…

    But SS itself may be at much greater risk as to ‘the Trust Fund’, unless taxes are raised for all to bolster it… both SS taxes, and general taxes (likely, due to AARP and other advocates)… it is what it is… a potential ‘spiral’…

    Those who invested in “the market”, as part of their retirement assets, will probably be pretty OK, but their offspring might see lower “inheritances”… it is what it is…

    That fundamental changes have occurred, whatever the cause, be it the pandemic, ‘climate change’, whatever, the future is unlikely to be like ‘your fathers’ Studebaker’… aka, “reality”…

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