Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Marin County, meet Scott Wiener

Transit oriented development in Corte Madera

Dick Spotswood on Scott Wiener's bill:

State Sen. Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, is again trying to ram high-density housing down the throat of suburban California. The San Francisco Democrat has introduced SB 872, which automatically allows housing developments within a quarter-mile of most bus stops to be 85 feet tall.

That’s eight floors high.

If the apartments are within a half-mile of the bus stop, five floors are then permitted as a matter of state law.

If SB 872 passes, Marinites who live within a quarter-mile of a Golden Gate or Marin Transit bus stop with service at least every 15 minutes during commute hours will find they ipso facto reside along a “high quality transit corridor.”

That new classification will subject them to the up-zoning mandate of SB 872.

The big-scale construction should be profitable, because SB 872 doesn’t require any of the housing it facilitates to be “affordable.”

Essentially, Corte Madera’s Tam Ridge apartments on the old WinCup site will be our future [photo above].

The top-down, we-know-best state bill exempts any residential development within a quarter-mile from so-called “high quality transit corridors” from “maximum controls on residential density or floor area ratio; minimum automobile parking requirements; and any design standard that restricts the applicant’s ability to construct the maximum number of units consistent with any applicable building code.”

Under Wiener’s bill every transit stop will be a development hub.

The hypocrisy is that this up-zoning will never happen in most of San Francisco [emphasis added]. With regional political clout, the city always manages to protect its traditional small-scale neighborhoods. Most of its new development is jammed in its southeast quadrant. I expect that won’t change with SB 872, but there will be one test to determine if I’m wrong.

For a century San Francisco’s Twin Peaks street car tunnel has linked the city’s western neighborhoods to downtown. Three light-rail lines traverse the bore with constant service interconnecting with buses at Castro and Market’s east portal, West Portal in the Sunset District and the mid-tunnel Forest Hills Muni Metro station. Unlike Larkspur’s Magnolia Avenue, with a commuter bus every 10 minutes these transit stops form a true “high quality transit corridor.”

West Portal and Forest Hills are composed mostly of single-family homes. Castro and Market involves three- to four-story apartments built in the 1920s and two-unit flats. Change these historic neighborhoods to high density and Wiener and the bill’s co-sponsor, Assemblyman Phil Ting, D-San Francisco, will courageously show Marin how to build dense housing.

They’ll need to persuade the city to permit and actually build eight-story apartment houses lining West Portal Avenue, the Sunset, upscale Forest Hills and low-rise Castro and Eureka Valley neighborhoods. Only then will we know they’re serious about constructing big-scale housing.

Destroying these beloved neighborhoods will also mark Wiener’s, Ting’s and other pro-housing politicians’ doom at the ballot box.

In the past decade, San Francisco’s torrid employment growth added over 200,000 high-paid tax-generating jobs without providing homes for most of the new workers. Instead, city and regional planners prefer that Marin’s communities alter their small-town character so San Francisco can reap the benefits without paying the price of demolishing their own low-scale districts in the name of “solving” the “housing crisis.”

Rob's comment:
Scott Wiener supported allowing highrises on San Francisco's waterfront, which was rejected by city voters, like his CEQA "reform" and his attempt at undermining our initiative rights. It was good to see Wiener go to Sacramento, where I wrongly thought he couldn't do much damage: Good news: Scott Wiener is leaving town. He seems to think he's a political visionary. If the city won't let him build highrises, he wants to build subways at $1 billion a mile: Scott Wiener: Subways and "pixie dust."

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At 10:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And let's not forget the Monster Highrises being built at the "Hub"...12,000 new residents with no parking because we are told that Van Ness/Market/Mission are transit rich! LOL.

And zero CEQA analysis of impacts of the Hub Monsters on adjoining soma small scale residential neighborhoods. Yes here in west soma are 45 foot two story residential apartments for working people. Lots of crafts people (plumbers, carpenters, painters) who live here and need to put their trucks on the street at night. Now the Hub Monster residents will part there cars in these residential enclaves. The MTA knows it and this is merely part of the MTA "plan" to make owning anything with an internal combustion engine impossible. Screw blue collar workers.


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