The terms of San Francisco’s proposed Affordable Housing Bonus Program (AHBP), which would allow developers to build up to three stories higher than currently zoned, have been amended.
And while a public hearing for the amended program will be held this week, the potential adoption of the AHBP has been pushed back by at least three months as the Planning Commission plans to continue its review until April at the earliest.
If adopted by both the City and developers, the program would add the potential for building another 16,000 units of housing across the city over the next 20 years, an increase of roughly 4 percent over the 380,000 units that currently exist.
“Included in those 16,000 new residential units would be 5,000 permanently affordable, income-restricted units: 2,000 homes for very-low, low and moderate income households, and 3,000 homes for middle-income households.
By comparison, [current] zoning would likely produce fewer than 1,000 affordable units, and just under 7,500 housing units overall. The AHBP could more than double the amount of on-site BMR units for very low, low and moderate income households, while creating a new source of income-restricted housing for middle income households earning between 120 and 140% of area median income.
Currently, no programs exist which guarantee housing for middle income households, a group which includes many of the professions necessary to keep our city functioning. Furthermore, middle-income households are a shrinking proportion of our city’s population.”
The recent amendments to the proposed AHBP includes language specifying that the program will only apply to new construction projects and explicitly excludes vertical additions to existing structures beyond their currently zoned height.
And in response to concerns that the bonus height program could “create a financial incentive for [developers] to demolish existing sound housing stock, particularly older units protected by rent control, in order to build larger buildings,” Supervisor London Breed has proposed an amendment which would disallow any project that demolishes an exiting rent control unit from being allowed any bonus height, regardless of how many new affordable units would be built.