One more group housing project that won’t skirt its affordability obligations

145 Leavenworth Street

 

by JIM MEKO

Supervisor John Avalos has amended the inclusionary housing legislation he recently introduced to apply affordability requirements to buildings that have not yet received their building permits as of May 2015.

The amendment would embrace two Tenderloin “group housing” projects, at 361 Turk Street and 145 Leavenworth Street, that are scheduled to go before the Planning Commission on June 4. Developers recently began to employ group housing as a way to get around the need to include a small percentage of units that are affordable to lower income residents, as was the case with 1532 Harrison Street. The Avalos legislation would close that loophole.

The Housing Action Coalition was the only outside organization to express support for the projects in this case report (http://commissions.sfplanning.org/cpcpackets/2012.1531CEX.pdf). The HAC is a tone-deaf offshoot of SPUR, the city’s pro-development “think tank” that’s composed of market rate developers and former Planning Department staff. They praised the projects for the “creative ways” they attempt to provide housing that’s affordable to our “under-served population” of middle-income residents.

A real coalition of Tenderloin residents and organizers have asked that you write to the Planning Commission, urging the Commissioners to ensure that inclusionary housing requirements are applied to these projects. A sample letter is available at this link.

The legislation will be heard by the Planning Commission on July 2 and then it will be sent back to the Board of Supervisors for its expected adoption. Supervisor Jane Kim is a co-sponsor.

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Filed under housing, planning, politics, social justice

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