State launches review of San Francisco’s housing approval practices
SFGate – August 9
The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) is launching an unprecedented review of San Francisco's housing approval process, aimed at analyzing and removing obstacles to the construction of new residential developments. HCD said last Tuesday that it would focus on San Francisco in its first "housing policy and practice review," a process intended to dissect why the city has the state's longest timelines for housing projects.
Multi-family remains strong; labor, construction costs, and interest rates remain a concern
Allen Matkins – August 3
Multi-family development continues in California even as increasing construction and labor costs and interest rates affect the market. Kitty Wallace, senior executive vice president at Colliers, and Caroline Chase, a land use partner at the San Francisco office of Allen Matkins, shared insight on what’s happening in the multi-family space and updates on how state legislation is facilitating new housing development, as part of the Summer 2022 Allen Matkins/UCLA Anderson Forecast California Commercial Real Estate Survey. The survey also includes forecasts for the retail, industrial, and office sectors.
Inflation Reduction Act includes funding to boost low-carbon materials in civil projects
Construction Dive – August 16
The federal Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 contains more than $5 billion to incentivize the use of low-carbon building materials in public infrastructure projects and certain government-owned buildings. The sprawling $485 billion bill, which President Joe Biden signed into law on Tuesday, aims to fight climate change and mitigate inflation. The bill also contains $4 billion to improve resiliency in affordable housing, including funds for low-carbon materials, and allows FEMA’s Building Materials program to offer financial assistance for low-carbon materials and net-zero energy projects.
High-rise mass timber structures cleared for California
CBS Sacramento – August 4
California building codes were updated in July to allow for the construction of mass timber buildings up to 18 stories tall. Mass timber, also known as cross laminated timber, can be a building alternative to steel and concrete because of its strength and fire resistance.
San Diego mayor signs Climate Action Plan into law
NBC San Diego – August 10
Mayor Todd Gloria last Wednesday signed into law an update to the city's Climate Action Plan, which includes setting a goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2035. City staff will bring a full implementation plan back to the council by February 2023. The plan calls for phasing out 90% of fossil fuel use in buildings by 2035 through electrification, appliance swaps, working with San Diego Community Power to offer 100% renewable electricity for all customers in San Diego by 2030, and planning for and investing in a mobility network that shifts 50% of all trips to walking, biking, or transit and reduces the overall need for vehicle use by 2035.
Santa Monica puts rent control measure on November ballot
The Real Deal – August 4
After weeks of public rhetoric and opposition from landlords, the Santa Monica City Council voted unanimously in favor of a November ballot measure that would reduce the city’s maximum annual rent increases. The referendum will ask voters whether the city should amend a section of its charter to reduce the maximum potential annual increase from 6% to 3% for rent-controlled units.
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