Commentary: Cal Supreme Upholds Enrollment Freeze at Berkeley – But Be Careful What You Wish For

(Photo by Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

By David M. Greenwald
Executive Editor

San Francisco, CA – It was a huge blow to those concerned with access to higher education.  In just one sentence, on a 4-2 vote, the Supreme Court refused to lift the enrollment freeze ordered by an Alameda County judge and denied review of an appellate ruling that freezes enrollment while mandating the university conduct further environmental review on housing projects.

Justice Goodwin Liu dissented, joined by Justice Joshua Groban.

“California and our broader society stand to lose the contributions of leadership, innovation, and service that would otherwise accrue if several thousand students did not have to defer or forgo the benefit of a UC Berkeley education this fall,” said Liu.

Berkeley Chancellor Carol Christ, among others, expressed disappointment in the ruling.

“This is devastating news for the students who have worked so hard for and have earned an offer of a seat in our fall 2022 class. Our fight on behalf of every one of these students continues,” they said.  “We know that providing access and opportunity for prospective UC students remains a priority, not just for the university, but also the state’s policymakers, as reflected in the recent state budget proposal to grow enrollment at UC.”

They noted, “This ruling is disheartening; however, our resolve is unwavering. We will do whatever we can to mitigate the harm to prospective students and to continue to serve our students.”

Senator Scott Wiener who just introduced legislation to reduce CEQA review of student housing projects said on Thursday, “It’s tragic that California allows courts and environmental laws to determine how many students UC Berkeley and other public colleges can educate. This ruling directly harms thousands of young people and robs them of so many opportunities. We must never allow this to happen again. We must change the law. And we will.”

While some slow growth advocates celebrated, it may end up being a Pyrrhic victory.

As NY Times reporter Ezra Klein noted in a tweet, “Just an insane decision. And note that this lawsuit is being brought under the California Environmental Quality Act, though everyone, on all sides, knows the issues here aren’t environmental.”

He said, “So please, stop telling me how CEQA has already been fixed.”

It’s worse than that, Klein elaborated, “The kinds of housing politics winning here do huge damage to the environment by pushing people further into car-dependent sprawl, by pushing people out of the state, and, long-term, by undermining actual environmentalists.”

In fact, as UC Davis Law Professor Chris Elmendorf pointed out, the Supreme Court decision to not intervene could be and perhaps “should be” a win for CEQA reformers.

For the first time, “this will light a fire under Legislature.”

For years housing advocates have been talking about CEQA reform, but now leaders like Governor Newsom who are in position to do something about it have suddenly found the motivation.

“We can’t let a lawsuit get in the way of the education and dreams of thousands of students who are our future leaders and innovators,” Governor Newsom said in a statement yesterday.

Elmendorf argued, “Ordinary, local byproducts of (population) growth in urban areas should not be treated as ‘environmental impacts’ under CEQA.”

Moreover, while previously efforts were talked about but dead in the water, now all of a sudden there is motivation from those who have often hesitated to touch the landmark legislation.

“Such a reform would have been a long shot prior to the Berkeley CEQA fiasco. NIMBY, labor, & nonprofit interests who butter their bread with CEQA litigation would have massed their forces against it,” Elmendorf argued.  “That they’ll still do, but now they’ll be met with an irate mass of organized, upper middle class parents, each of whom is sure their 18-year-old would have gotten into Berkeley if not for the NIMBYs’ lawsuit. The parents’ voices will be heard, loudly.”

I think that’s spot on—the politics have changed.  CEQA is a vital legislation and protection of the environment is a must, but stopping housing doesn’t protect the environment, it simply shifts where the impact goes.  That’s been one of my biggest complaints about CEQA, it doesn’t do a good job of understanding let alone evaluating the tradeoffs—if not there, then it will be somewhere else.

Moreover, Elmendorf believes that Justice Liu’s dissent “opens the door to larger changes in how courts think about CEQA remedies.”

Liu wrote, for example, “The petition by the Regents of the University of California presents significant questions regarding whether and how courts should account for harm to third parties when exercising their discretion to grant a temporary stay of a trial court injunction pending appeal.

“If the trial court’s injunction capping enrollment at the level for the 2020-2021 academic year remains in place, UC Berkeley will be forced to issue approximately 5,000 fewer letters of admission and to enroll 3,050 fewer students than planned. These aggregate numbers should not obscure the particular loss to each of these individuals,” he argued.

“The benefits of an education at a prestigious university are substantial, especially for students from less privileged backgrounds, and can have lasting impacts on a student’s future employment, income level, and personal and social development’ Liu wrote noting, “UC Berkeley is an engine for social mobility by producing many more low-income graduates than our private peers.”

Liu argued then, as Elmendorf put it, “when the interests of third parties are strong enough, a court that finds a CEQA violation should not put the agency action on hold.”

Will this lead to a renewed push for CEQA reform and give a boost to Wiener’s bill that we discussed earlier this week?  It seems likely. It even seems possible, maybe even probable, that this will lead to even stronger legislation to reform CEQA.  For the first time, perhaps, this is an actual possibility.


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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36 thoughts on “Commentary: Cal Supreme Upholds Enrollment Freeze at Berkeley – But Be Careful What You Wish For”

  1. Ron Oertel

    The threats on here to undermine CEQA (in response to this win in court) are evidence that the YIMBY types don’t care one bit about alleged “housing shortages”.

    But I already knew that, having observed what they actually advocate for. They simply want growth, but try to disguise it using every argument under the sun.

        1. Keith Y Echols

          The case has CEQA effecting things beyond the project that it addresses.  In this case, overall student enrollment.

          Now I’m all for the UC system reducing enrollment.  And I’m all for neighborhoods resisting being forced accept housing UC’s revenue producing assets.   But legally speaking, I do not like the implication that CEQA’s reach can go so far beyond it’s intent on specific development and not a general blanket enforcement on an entire area and community.  To me that goes far beyond CEQA’s intent.

        2. Ron Oertel

          Interesting point, if that’s solely what the CEQA lawsuit was based upon.  My guess is that the lawsuit isn’t that simple.

          Then again, if there’s no plan to house the additional students, it’s logical that there would be an “environmental” impact that must be addressed.


        3. Keith Y Echols

          Then again, if there’s no plan to house the additional students, it’s logical that there would be an “environmental” impact that must be addressed.

          Yes, it’s logical that the environmental impact of additional students should be addressed.  But the technical question is if CEQA is how policies and their greater impacts should be addressed.  CEQA is supposed to be project specific.  So how 100 students affect a street and neighborhood is the proper application.  Not how 1500 students (or however many) that the UC intends to accept impacts the greater city.  To me it’s like using a speeding ticket to justify putting in an new intersection, stop lights and auto-radar gun sign.

        4. Ron Glick

          My guess is that the provision in CEQA to take into account “cumulative impacts” is at the center of the lawsuit. Its easy to raise the issue of cumulative impacts but hard to assess how the environment is impacted by them.

          The courts having failed thousands of applicants to UC my guess is that the legislature will take up Weiner’s bill to exempt UC from CEQA. After the Governor’s race in Virginia I doubt Newsom wants to give the GOP this issue to make hay with in November. The big question is if you can get 2/3 of the legislature to go along and do this as an emergency bill or if it will be done under regular order. The difference being whether the exemption will go into effect immediately or in Jan 2023.

      1. Richard_McCann

        Keith E

        I have no clue as to why you want to reduce educational opportunity for students while you have already earned the privileges associated with a college degree. I agree that we need to expand career tech education (CTE) so that students won’t feel compelled to attend a college to gain the benefits that you and I have, but some sort of top down capping or other policy to discourage attendance really smacks of protecting privilege and status.

        More broadly we should be encouraging increased density in urban areas to protect our environment and to reduce the risks of natural disasters that tend to occur in rural areas, such as wildfires and floods. Our current wildfire situation is largely the result of pushing housing to the edge of and into the wildlands because we’ve discouraged urban development. The increased greenhouse gas emissions from excessive travel has exacerbated this situation further.

        1. Keith Y Echols

          More broadly we should be encouraging increased density in urban areas to protect our environment and to reduce the risks of natural disasters that tend to occur in rural areas, such as wildfires and floods.

          In general, I’m not pro development or growth in my community for fiscal reasons (and quality of life).  But if you’re going to have build new housing my preference is for infill (in fact I dislike peripheral development….which is kind of ironic.)  I’ve been on the “New Urbanism” kick for almost 20 years (while at the same time annexing and developing property for housing projects).  So I’m all for more urbanization.  But I’m also a pragmatist and know that infill development is expensive so it can’t be the only solution endorsed for new development (if new development is necessary).

          I have no clue as to why you want to reduce educational opportunity for students while you have already earned the privileges associated with a college degree. 

          I find this reasoning silly and irrationally self righteous.  People got into college and didn’t get into college when I went to college.  They got into the college they wanted and didn’t get into the college they wanted.  So I’m not advocating anything different.

          The UC’s never ending quest for growth is unsustainable.  Contraction might be painful but it’s also healthy.  You’re a dogmatic believer in supply and demand; if they enrolled less students, the supply of student housing would increase and the cost of student housing would fall.

  2. Ron Oertel

    As I noted yesterday, Wiener and Newsom apparently haven’t yet been able to ensure that their cronies take over the court system.  However, note the following:

    The California Supreme Court on Thursday declined to lift an enrollment cap on UC Berkeley, forcing one of the nation’s most popular campuses to scramble for ways to avoid what it initially feared could be cuts as large as one-third of its incoming fall class, or 3,050 seats, just weeks before it was set to release admission decisions.

    A university spokesman said the campus would meet the court-ordered enrollment cap by offering at least 1,500 incoming first-year and transfer students online enrollment for fall or deferred admission next January for spring semester. In addition, students who plan to be away from campus this fall on study programs abroad or in other cities will help Berkeley meet the enrollment cap. And many students graduate each winter, freeing up seats for spring. As a result, Berkeley may only need to cut its incoming 2022-23 class by a few hundred students rather than thousands as initially feared.
    Who (exactly) spread the “initial fear” that is referred to in bolded text, above – given that it’s “suddenly” turning out to be inaccurate?

    And what would the impact be if they stopped pursuing non-resident students?

    1. Craig Ross

      Newsom and Brown now have a majority on the court.  But housing isn’t their only and probably not even their primary concern when they appoint judges.  Lucky for you.

      1. Ron Oertel

        “Lucky for you.”

        It’s fortunate for those who care about manufactured “housing shortages”.

        By the way, hasn’t there always been folks who can’t get into UC Berkeley – despite applying?  Thousands of them, every year?

        For that matter, don’t a lot of students submit applications to multiple universities?

        1. Keith Olson

          By the way, hasn’t there always been folks who can’t get into UC Berkeley – despite applying?  Thousands of them, every year?
          For that matter, don’t a lot of students submit applications to multiple universities?

          I remember my daughter submitted about a half a dozen applications.  She didn’t get accepted to UC Berkeley despite a 3.83 GPA.  I’m fairly sure it came down to she was too white.

        2. Ron Oertel

          I wouldn’t be surprised.

          As I posted the other day, there’s now a “pathway program” which apparently guarantees acceptance in “sought-after programs” (for community college transferees) at one of the six UCs which participate in the program:

          Pathways+ | UC Admissions (

          UC transfer programs | UC Admissions (

          Seems to me that the YIMBY arguments have zero credibility, as usual.

  3. Eileen Samitz

    This decision clearly has been needed because universities like UCD has historically and continue to be negligent in providing adequate on-campus housing for their growing student populations. UCD is the largest UC with over 5,300 acres and a 900-acre core campus, yet they are still resisting building even more needed on-campus housing, by their students and by their faculty and staff. UCD has over 110,000 student applicants this year more than ever before. Per their own current Long Range-Development Plan (LRDP) UCD is not supposed exceed 38,000 before 2031, yet they have almost reached that student population now.

    Therefore, this Court decision is all the more important now to let UCs know that they are to be held accountable for being irresponsible planning regarding their negligence to provide student housing and focusing just on the income they want to receive for the high-cost of UC tuition from the students.

    Here are just a few examples of UCD’s irresponsible “planning”:

    1) UCD has made ZERO progress in building the “planned” faculty and staff housing that they now have used part of for parking for Orchard Park graduate student housing, which was off line for almost 7 years (which cause more housing needs for Davis and surrounding cities.)

    2) The Orchard Park project in progress has LESS beds then were originally planned in the LRDP.

    3) Orchard Park is another example of UCD squandering their new housing opportunities b not building higher density housing like other UC’s had very successfully done at Irvine (which has plenty of on-campus student housing despite its smaller campus including 6 story student housing which UCD should be building or higher). Most student housing at UCD is 3- and a few 4- and a rare 5-story building in their student housing. Meanwhile Davis Live on Russell, owned by a private company, is 7-stories. Unlike UCD where the land is free, this private company had to pay top dollar for the land. So, clearly, higher-density on-campus student housing it is very feasible, and far more affordable to build. Clearly, UCD teaches sustainable planning but does not practice it.

    4) UCD has been pushing 71% of their student housing off-campus for years. This, in turn has had a major impact on raising housing prices in Davis and pushed our workforce and families out of Davis. yet, Davis has done more than its fair-share of providing student housing by approving over 5,000 additional mega-dorm student beds in Davis, however since these units are exclusionary by design for students only, and are of no help to providing housing for Davis workers and families.

    The good news is that this UC Berkeley issue has raised the awareness that the time is now for the State legislature to not just ask for funding for student housing, but to mandate UC’s and State universities to build more on-campus housing.

    Finally, this type of mandate is necessary because universities like UCD have not applied for the Newson money allocated for student housing.

     So, if the Vanguard cares so much about student housing needs, why doesn’t the Vanguard report about this egregious delinquency by UCD of not applying for the State housing funds for student housing?

    1. Richard_McCann


      You continue to advocate for disenfranchising students in our community by demanding that they be placed in a community where they have no electoral voice or representation. You also call for segregating those students from participating in our community.

      The most important statistic is that student enrollment at UCD continues to sit in the historic range of 45% to 55% of the City’s population. Adding on campus housing is appropriate for younger students but for those we are preparing, as a community, to emerge as productive citizens we need to embrace them as members of the citizenry of Davis. If you are unwilling to accept your obligation conferred by the benefits of living in a town created and sustained by the taxpayers of the state of California, perhaps you might consider moving to a community where focusing on your own needs over others is acceptable.

      1. Keith Y Echols

        Students are adults like the rest of us.  They get to live here if they can afford it.

        Housing should be planned if it makes sense for the city (most new housing doesn’t…especially student housing).

        I’m all for planning a student quarter in the city that focuses on student retail and services and if necessary (begrudgingly) would include student (affordable) housing options.  That way student spending tax revenue is captured by the city to help pay for the services necessary to support those students in the city.  This is helped by making this student focused retail area a destination entertainment area as well to draw in outside people (young adults like hanging out with young adults) to spend money and generate more sales tax revenue for the city.

        However, your irrational idea of an “obligation” to the UC is complete balderdash.  It’s a mystical magical idea of social and economic unity between the city and university.   Do we owe an obligation to Sacramento and their government jobs?  I know we should be obliged to the DJUSD as the second largest employer in Davis!  And the city itself is the third largest employer!  And let’s not forget Safeway!  The fifth largest employer!  Let’s create specific bagger housing…super special housing for baggers! By the city and the UC keeping each other out of the city limits; they’ve basically agreed that each will do their own thing. Whatever spills over benefits or negatives is incidental.

        1. Richard_McCann

          We all have social compacts that are unwritten that direct our decision making and choices, and most importantly, how we relate to others. We all have an obligation to not break into our neighbors’ houses despite the fact that if we all did it we could easily overwhelm the police force. We know that such chaos would lead to a response with greater force and increased policing costs, so we make a collective choice to cooperate and even protect our neighbors’ houses. There are many other examples of these sorts of compacts that result in obligations and responsibilities. (Unfortunately a rising political force in this country and elsewhere aims to smash these compacts, and we see evidence of this in Ukraine today.)

          The point of societal investment in education is that it improves the overall well being of society in many ways, even beyond economic. As part of that investment we support students through their educational process. That they turn 18 or that they graduate from high school is irrelevant to this investment process. As part of that investment process to assure the best return on investment, we protect students from certain market forces such as uncontrolled housing costs or a need to earn a full income simultaneously.

          You raise false comparisons to Sacramento and DJUSD. You are completely missing my point (or ignoring it because its inconvenient to your viewpoint focused on narrow self interest here). We are not hosts to the state government–the citizens of Sacramento as the electoral decision makers there are obligated to accept the responsibilities that come from hosting the state government. It is not our concern. DJUSD was largely financially self sufficient until the 1976 Serrano decision. Even then we contribute state tax revenues roughly in proportion to what DJUSD receives from the state (and even in deficit). So there’s no net direct economic benefit flow from DJUSD to the community. (Arguably the relative excellence of our schools bequeath an attractive attribute that substantially increases our housing values (nearly 100% over other Yolo cities) and we are obligated to curate and maintain that situation to protect our investments.) In contrast, Davis has gotten a large infusion of both funds and a highly educated workplace at the bequest of other state taxpayers. Davis is what it is solely because of UCD. Again, look at Dixon for what we would be otherwise.

          I would support a more vibrant student quarter, much like those that exist next to many other large universities. That’s a valid step to better integrate students into our community. (Although we’re ignoring the situation with staff which is more than half the number of students.)


        2. Keith Y Echols

          So…uh…you’re comparing a societal pact at upholding the law with allowing the UC to overrun the city with students and having to support it????   A true reductio ad absurdum there…..actually that doesn’t even apply as one is illegal the other is simply funding services to house kids that want to go to college.  Of all the societal obligations on my list (true homelessness, hunger, medical care…etc..) students getting to go to college and where they go to college is pretty far down my list of things I feel I want to fund.

           The point of societal investment in education is that it improves the overall well being of society in many ways, even beyond economic. 

          as part of that investment process to assure the best return on investment, we protect students from certain market forces such as uncontrolled housing costs or a need to earn a full income simultaneously.

          Yeah…no…if you want the income gap between graduates and non-graduates to improve…IMRPOVE THE PROSPECTS FOR NON-GRADUATES.  Not everyone wants to or should go to college.  It’s some weird liberal mysticism that pushes college for everyone.  And your answer is that the benefits of college are to house young people?  So college and student housing is just a shelter solution?  That’s a pretty costly solution.  You want the best return on investment for young high school graduates?  Create and protect jobs that don’t require degrees.  Make jobs that require degrees justify their requirement.  Put continuing to pump in new college graduates just continues to feed the ever growing higher education machine…which is unsustainable.

          What the heck are you talking about in regards to Sacramento and DJUSD?  I listed them because they provide the most jobs in Davis….which would carry over to their importance (and by your reasoning social contract) to the city of Davis.

          Again, Davis and UCD have decided to politically and economically do their own thing.  Meaning they’re doing what is in their own best interests.  I’d think as an economist you’d understand that reasoning.  Again, any carryover benefits or negatives is incidental.  THERE IS NO POLITICAL OR ECONOMIC OBLIGATION BETWEEN THE TWO ENTITIES.  That means the city can’t dictate to UCD if and how they can grow.  And UDC can’t dictate to Davis to provide services to support their student population.  UCD does not have to pay property or sales tax to the city of Davis.  The city doesn’t have to provide services support for UCD.

  4. Eileen Samitz



    First, I guess you feel it is ok for UCD, which has plenty of land to provide on-campus student housing, to push 71% of their student population off-campus. Sorry, but I don’t agree with that.

    Second, it sounds like you have no problem with UCD building lower-density housing, which wastes land opportunities for more student housing.  For instance, is no UCD on-campus student housing over 5-stories, yet Davis has approved two 7-story student housing projects.

    Third, it appears that you don’t want the UCs or the State universities to be pressure to build needed on-campus housing for their student. So, I guess we have a difference of opinion here too.

    Fourth, my concern and criticism is of UCD, not the students since they are the victims here as well as Davis and surrounding communities, due to UCD’s negligent planning causing so many impacts.

    Finally, I think making personal attacks and making false accusations about me because you disagree with my opinion is inappropriate. Further, I thought the Vanguard had policies to not allow this type of antagonistic language that you have posted.



    1. Richard_McCann


      I suggest that you look at the implications of what you’re pushing. I know your long history, and you have hidden a selfish agenda of protecting a mythological vision of Davis behind a claim of “progressivism.” Instead, your proposals push for continued segregation. The only reason to push for housing on UC campuses is a selfish desire to protect privilege.

      1. Ron Oertel

        From Michelle Andrews, the student Legislative Director of the ASUCD and President of the UCD College Democrats:

        “A lot of the issues with private developments like Ryder and Sterling are that they are completely unaffordable for a lot of students.”  Moreover, she said, “most students prefer to live on campus.  Not only is it more convenient, you can walk to classes and get food on campus and all of that, but a lot of the times financial aid can help with housing costs on campus.”

        She said “and a lot of people live on campus, so it’s a big appeal to stay on campus.”

        As a side note, I recall that Don Shor recently noted that the UC system only gets 11% of its funding from the state.  As such, Richard’s argument would logically state that the city is only “responsible for” 11% of UCD’s housing needs, rather than the 71% that it’s actually providing.

      2. Ron Glick

        I agree with Richard that the policy Eileen supports of building housing on campus results in the outcomes Richard describes. I’ve never heard Eileen admit to it but I have heard others make the claim that keeping additional student housing on campus, where they can’t vote in city or measure J elections, is what motivates Eileen.

        Still, until I hear it from Eileen I consider it all here say. Anyway perhaps Eileen would like to clarify her views on why she believes building student housing on campus is superior to building it in the city?

  5. Ron Oertel

    Richard: “Arguably the relative excellence of our schools bequeath an attractive attribute that substantially increases our housing values (nearly 100% over other Yolo cities).”

    Wow – please let us know which Yolo county cities offer housing at 1/2 the cost of Davis housing.

    Also, are students from those communities (already) largely able to attend Davis schools, regardless? More than 1,000 of them, for that matter?

    1. Ron Glick

      New single family detached home in Spring Lake around $300/ square foot. New single family detached home at Cannery around $600/ square foot.

      Source: Zillow homes for sale listings.

        1. Ron Oertel

          Even at $450/sqft that is 150% of Woodland. So saying Davis is somewhere between 1.5-2 times Woodland is a fair estimate.

          No, it isn’t.  It is NOT twice the cost.

          I’ve seen estimates around 40% higher.

          Even so, that price difference is what causes many to seek out housing in the new developments in Woodland. (Especially as housing prices increase EVERYWHERE, making it less-affordable to many younger families regardless of the locale.)

          $600K or more (for a house in Woodland) is already not affordable, for some.

          In general, as prices rise – folks seek out other options. That’s how it works.

          Young people in particular looks for employment opportunities, cheaper housing, and lower taxes (while still having a decent school system which hasn’t necessarily been taken-over by unions or the “woke” crowd). That’s a big reason why California is no longer growing.

      1. Ron Oertel

        Ron G: Not seeing any link to that, nor am I familiar with the ability to narrow the parameters by neighborhood.

        You’re claiming that a house that costs $600,000 in Spring Lake would cost $1.2 million at The Cannery? (Of course, neither neighborhood is entirely-representative of their respective cities.)

        But if true, that certainly explains why (new) residents to the area (looking for a newly-built house) would seek out Spring Lake (and send their kids to Davis schools).

        I suspect that Keith’s numbers are more accurate, which popped up as I was typing this.

      2. Ron Oertel

        I would say, however – that the average “quality” of homes at The Cannery seems a little better than that found in Spring Lake.  Better finishes, etc.

        (I like touring model homes.)

        If I was a younger person moving to the area, I’d probably look toward “pre-owned” (used) homes. But I might wait for the next housing crash (e.g., due to economic disruption, rising interest rates, etc.).

        Certainly, “supply” will increase at some point – even without building a stick more housing. (Turns out that as prices increase, demand decreases – that’s how it works.)

  6. Ron Oertel

    Interesting article:

    Earlier versions of this story included outdated enrollment impact estimates, which were supplied by UC Berkeley officials. Our story has been updated to reflect revised numbers from UC Berkeley, which indicate a less dire impact on new students than the university’s past statements and projections had suggested.


    UC Berkeley will be able to enroll almost all the roughly 9,200 students it planned for this coming academic year, even though the California Supreme Court Thursday refused to strike down a lower court’s order that the university cut its campus enrollment.

    So apparently, the throngs of angry parents who couldn’t get their kids into their “preferred” UC aren’t going to materialize, despite the gross “miscalculation” by UC Berkeley. (Might that have been put forth for political purposes?)

    But, that certainly won’t stop the Wiener/Newsom YIMBYs. I’m sure that they’ll continue doing their best to manufacture anger and division.

  7. Eileen Samitz

    Regarding Richard McCann’s and Ron Glick’s condescending and false accusations, it is hard to believe that they so strongly oppose on-campus housing when there are so many reasons why on-campus student housing makes sense.

    Here are just a few reasons why on-campus student housing makes so much sense:

    1) The students are closer to their classes so it dramatically reduces circulation impacts on the surrounding communities, in this case Davis relative to UCD. So, it not only reduces traffic and pollution due to fewer cars commuting to and from the campus, but it is superior because since is it is practicing sustainable planning. Again, UCD teaches sustainable planning, but doesn’t want to practice it.

    2) Because on-campus housing is so close to the student classes, they student can walk as well as ride their bikes to get around the campus, so it is more convenient for the students.

    3) There is significant evidence that student who live on-campus, generally do better academically. This is one of the reasons why UC Irvine was so motivated to build so much on-campus student housing as well as the many sustainable planning advantages.

    4) Many students want on-campus housing because of the convenience of living close to their classes and facilities on-campus. This was stated by a UCD student in a recent Vanguard article as Ron Oertel has pointed out. Here is that information again where this UCD student also points out that living off campus is often more expensive:
    From Michelle Andrews, the student Legislative Director of the ASUCD and President of the UCD College Democrats:
    “A lot of the issues with private developments like Ryder and Sterling are that they are completely unaffordable for a lot of students.”  Moreover, she said, “most students prefer to live on campus.  Not only is it more convenient, you can walk to classes and get food on campus and all of that, but a lot of the times financial aid can help with housing costs on campus.”
    She said “and a lot of people live on campus, so it’s a big appeal to stay on campus.”

    5) It is cheaper to build housing on-campus since the university land is free, unlike land off campus land. Because UCD owns the land, another advantage is that this enables the ability to keep the cost of on-campus student housing lower, long-term. UCs are tax-exemption status also helps keep the housing costs down as well, unlike off campus.

    So, are many reasons why UCD should be building far more on-campus housing, particularly since it is the largest UC with over 5,300 acres with a 900-acre campus.

    Finally, it is inexcusable that UCD is the only UC which has not committed to building at least 50% on-campus student housing, and it is also inexcusable that UCD is not applying for Gov. Newson’s State funding available for universities to build more student housing.

  8. Alan Miller

    ‘Sup people?  Alan Miller is in the hooooooouuuuse!

    Weiner’s bill is for on campus housing.  So progressive students get their housing, and Davis residents don’t get an equivalent amount of student housing in town.

    Seems like a win-win to me.

    Unless one is fixated on students being able to vote on City issues.  Which few of them do by the numbers, and those that do can choose to live off campus if it’s important to them.  And in the long run Davis can annex UC Davis.

    Seems like a win-win to me.

    Alan Miller is in the hooooooouuuuse!

    1. Ron Oertel

      Wiener’s bill is about the elimination of CEQA requirements (and mitigations) resulting from increased enrollments and campus developments, on adjacent cities. It may, or may not result in more housing on campus.

      An example of that was access to Russell, for West Village.  (The lawsuit that Dan Carson and others were involved with, as I recall.)  If CEQA requirements are eliminated, I would think that such lawsuits would have no basis to proceed (and that adjacent communities would have no say regarding such impacts).

      One might ask if CEQA requirements are preventing campus housing from being built in the first place.  In the case of the West Village lawsuit (from adjacent neighbors), it ultimately did not impact the amount of housing (but apparently did result in some kind of agreement to not connect to Russell).  I don’t recall how this all went down.

      Here’s another CEQA-based lawsuit (from the Association of Federal, State, County and Municipal Employees) regarding West Village that I wasn’t aware of, which (also) ultimately had no impact:


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