Recent progress on the home front

Collaborative work to tackle the region’s housing shortage — one of the largest obstacles to economic growth on the Central Coast — has been making strides in recent weeks.


+ SLO County took new steps last week to build on the housing framework that REACH partnered on with the county and SLOCOG last year. With an eye toward meeting the county’s 2028 state housing goals, the supervisors directed staff to develop land use changes that could allow more density and multifamily housing in areas zoned for commercial development, a down payment assistance program, policies encouraging development of more accessory dwelling units, and incentives for affordable housing. Read more in the SLO Tribune.


+ Santa Barbara County Supervisors urged developers to prioritize more affordable housing in a workshop Tuesday as they consider sites that could be rezoned to meet the county’s 2031 state goals. The County Planning Commission will hold hearings on the proposed rezones March 27 and April 1, with recommendations for Board action in April or May. The county is also undertaking a study on ways to create more workforce housing, including the potential of building on county-owned land.

Try your hand at crafting a plan that meets the state requirements with the county’s Balancing Act simulation tool.


+ Last week’s 10th annual SLO County Housing Summit explored a range of issues and ideas on moving the needle on housing. Here’s coverage from KSBY. An April 4 Building A Better SLO event tackles the history and future of multifamily housing in the state.


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+ The City of San Luis Obispo became the first in the two-county region to earn the state’s Pro-Housing Designation, a recognition of efforts to encourage housing development across all income levels that unlocks funding incentives and additional resources to help speed housing production. In announcing the designation, the state cited the city’s hillside planning program, adoption of objective design standards and waiving of impact fees for affordable housing projects.


News from REACH, Housing