Density Bonuses for Affordable Housing
You'll learn about:
The diversity of density bonus programs and the challenges of developing and implementing these programs in large cities
The opportunities and limitations of density bonus programs as an effective zoning tool
Strategies for community engagement around the implementation of density bonus programs
Local density bonus programs look to balance developer incentives, affordable and middle-income housing goals, neighborhood character, and needs unique to each city. The challenge for cities with specialized needs is how to incentivize development within a local process that is more prescriptive than the state law.
Listen in as key players in diverse municipalities—Chicago, Boston, and San Francisco—speak to the challenges and opportunities afforded by expanding inclusionary housing through the zoning tool of density bonus incentives. This comparative discussion also considers differences between state and city laws and ways to address regional specificity.
Chicago: The City of Chicago’s complex bonus system—and in particular the city’s Affordable Requirements Ordinance—has been recently supplemented by a new “Neighborhoods Opportunity” program. Announced in Spring and implemented in Summer 2016, the amended program provides density bonuses for both transit-oriented development and development projects in the newly expanded downtown area that facilitate neighborhood development projects. Chicago has a fast-growing urban center, and these reforms seek to help accelerate this growth by allowing for additional development in areas adjacent to zoning districts currently designated as “downtown.”
Boston: Seen as a national leader for affordable housing—with almost 20 percent of the housing stock income restricted as affordable to low-income families—Boston is still working to expand inclusionary housing through a density bonus incentive. The Mayor’s Housing Innovation Lab and the Boston Redevelopment Authority partnered to set up pilot programs for two distinctly different corridors. Through extensive community engagement, they determined the appropriate target income level and percent of the benefit to allocate towards housing in each neighborhood. In the high density South Boston area, the density bonus targets middle-income units and allocates additional benefit to open space and affordable business space; in the lower density infill neighborhood of Jamaica Plain/Roxbury, the bonus is focused on displacement prevention, allocating 100 percent of the benefit to housing lower- income residents.
San Francisco: The new Affordable Housing Bonus Program (AHBP) is being developed in San Francisco in response to two catalysts: a recent court decision spurring compliance with the unenforced 1979 State Density Bonus Law and a 2014 local measure mandating 30,000 new housing units by 2020, with 10,000 priced at below-market levels. This panel will look to ways the 1979 state law has been addressed throughout California and will follow the arc of the development of the AHBP—from the establishment of policy goals, through the zoning and feasibility analyses, to community outreach and response, and its current status.
, David Baker Architects
, San Francisco
Confirmed SpeakerDaniel Simons AIA LEED AP joined David Baker Architects in 2000. A Principal of the firm—which was awarded the AIACC 2012 Distinguished Practice Honor for its legacy of sustainable affordable housing—he has more than 15 years of experience in design, construction document preparation, and construction administration. Daniel's focus is on the field of multi-family housing, including affordable and market-rate projects, with a special emphasis on minimizing buildings' environmental impact while improving the quality of life for residents through green building practice and progressive city planning. He became a LEED accredited professional in 2004, and since then he has acted as Project Architect for a number of large, multi-family LEED developments. These projects include San Francisco's Folsom + Dore Supportive Housing, the first multi-family building to achieve LEED Silver certification in Northern California, and Oakland's Tassafaronga Village, which has achieved LEED ND Stage 3 Gold and LEED for Homes Platinum certification, and was awarded the 2015 AIA top ten COTE award. These projects also won numerous design and development awards. Daniel holds a Masters of Architecture degree from the University of Washington.
, Boston Redevelopment Authority
Confirmed SpeakerTim Davis is the Housing Policy Manager for the Boston Redevelopment Authority. Tim has worked in the field of housing and community development for over 20 years. Tim has worked for a community development corporation, the City of Boston, the Boston Foundation, and as an independent research and policy consultant. Tim holds a BA from Macalester College in Georgraphy, Urban Studies, and Economics, and an MPA from the Harvard Kennedy School, where he was a Rappaport Boston Urban Scholar.
Confirmed SpeakerAs the Program Co-Manager of the Mayor's Housing Innovation Lab in Boston, Marcy brings her background in civic innovation, urban policy, and education. She previously worked as the Strategic Project Manager at the Right Question Institute advancing a question formulation strategy used for problem-solving in innovation, critical thinking in education and self-advocacy in social services. Previously she worked as a High School Biology Teacher at the Boston Day & Evening Academy. Her experiences as an urban educator drove her to explore innovative solutions to systemic and complex problems that face low-income families. Marcy holds an MA in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University and an MEd from Franklin Pierce University.
, San Francisco City-County
, San Francisco
Confirmed SpeakerKearstin Dischinger, Housing Policy Manager, City of San Francisco, has over ten years of long range planning and policy experience, with a focus on affordable housing, housing strategies, transit oriented development, infrastructure planning, value recapture, and transportation network planning. Kearstin has managed citywide and neighborhood based planing projects including the City's Housing Element, the Market and Octavia Area Plan and the Green Connections Plan. She likely learned the most about planning from her childhood days in suburban Philadelphia, however she also studied at the University of Chicago and Cornell University.
Confirmed SpeakerPaul Shadle is a partner in DLA Piper's Development, Land Use and Government Affairs practice group. He concentrates his practice in the areas of general real estate development transactions (including acquisitions and dispositions), corporate real estate services, land use and zoning, public-private finance, incentives for development and facilities location, and government affairs. Mr. Shadle represents owners, developers, investors, lenders, retailers and a variety of entrepreneurial and institutional clients in complex real estate, private and public financing, annexation, zoning and government-related matters for corporate, office, industrial, retail, residential and mixed use development projects. Prior to practicing law, Paul was a land planning and transportation analyst for the US Department of Transportation. He also served as a staff member for US Senator Paul Simon.