A look at affordable housing production in the East Bay

Inclusionary Zoning advocates and lazy reporters love to accuse IZ opponents of not caring about providing affordable housing. This is far from true. IZ opponents are simply more concerned with facts and reason than with emotion, and repeat time and time again that while IZ might sound nice and helpful and all that, it has not been demonstrated to be an effective method of providing affordable housing in cities. In fact, if an IZ ordinance passed in Oakland, the city’s own economic analysis (PDF!) has shown that it will halt new housing construction, resulting in a net decrease in the number of below market rate units produced.

Below I have listed the number of affordable units produced in a number of East Bay cities between 2000 and 2005. The number of units is reported by each city itself. Population figures come from the State Department of Finance, and reflect the number of residents on 1/1/06. I have listed these cities in order of how many below market rate units each city produced per capita.

The only city on this list that does not currently have IZ is Oakland. However, Richmond adopted a voluntary IZ policy in 2001, and Fremont and Alameda adopted their policies in 2002.

Richmond
Rental Units: 438
Ownership Units: 147
Total Units: 585
Population: 102,676
Affordable units created per capita: .00570

Dublin
Rental Units: 113
Ownership Units: 105
Total Units: 218
Population: 41,891
Affordable units created per capita: .00520

Livermore
Rental Units: 375
Ownership Units: 22
Total Units: 397
Population: 81,442
Affordable units created per capita: .00487

Oakland
Rental Units: 1,168
Ownership Units: 316
Total Units: 1,484
Population: 411,334
Affordable units created per capita: .00361

Alameda
Rental Units: 122
Ownership Units 95
Total Units 217
Population: 74,551
Affordable units created per capita: .00291

Hayward
Rental Units: 397
Ownership Units: 22
Total Units: 419
Population: 146,391
Affordable units created per capita: .00286

San Leandro
Rental Units: 179
Ownership Units: 47
Total Units: 226
Population: 81,071
Affordable units created per capita: .00279

Berkeley
Rental Units: 187
Ownership Units: 5
Total Units 192
Population: 105,382
Affordable units created per capita: .00182

Fremont
Rental Units: 231
Ownership Units: 0
Total Units: 231
Population: 210,150
Affordable units created per capita: .00110

This is just information I think should be out there. I will try to supplement with some commentary tomorrow.

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