The Affordable Housing Bonus Program does not incentivize development that will benefit San Francisco residents who are being pushed out. Here are three reasons why.
Whether developers opt for the state-proposed bonus program or the local bonus program (the Affordable Housing Bonus Program), developers who build 70-87% luxury housing should not be rewarded. While the Affordable Housing Bonus Program is substantially better than the state-proposed bonus program, it is not enough. Developers play a critical role in developing affordable housing and healthy communities. We don’t need developments with 70-87% luxury housing. We need truly affordable housing, which will benefit all San Francisco residents.
The affordable housing that is being incentivized with the Affordable Housing Bonus Program is notoriously difficult to enforce. While 30% affordable housing will be required of developers, there is a very low chance that these BMR units will remain BMR units in perpetuity, especially when there is so much to gain by evading these rules. The Affordable Housing Bonus Program naively does not acknowledge these difficulties and instead, insists that BMR units are better than expanding rent-control protections. We need better mechanisms to hold developers and landlords accountable, and these mechanisms do not exist yet - any density bonus program should acknowledge and attempt to combat these obstacles.
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