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CP&DR News Briefs June 28, 2022: Burbank SB 35 Lawsuit; San Diego ADU Parking; L.A. Political Contributions, and More

Mckenzie Locke on
Jun 28, 2022

Burbank Faces SB 35 Lawsuit over Denial of Residential Development
YIMBY Law filed a lawsuit against the City of Burbank for illegally blocking a project seemingly compliant with SB 35. The lawsuit states that the rejection of the 96-unit condominium project violates the state law, which streamlines approvals for new housing when a city is not on track to meet RHNA goals. Burbank's City Planning Department and the Department of Housing and Community Development had previously reviewed the project and found that it met all of SB 35's requirements. However, Burbank rejected the project, aligning with residents concerned about traffic and equestrian activity. The state HCD has also sent Burbank a Notice of Violation in response to their rejection. (See related CP&DR commentary.)

San Diego Reconsiders Parking Exemptions for ADUs
The City of San Diego is going backwards on its parking exemption policy for property owners planning to build new accessory dwelling units along the coast. Moving forward, beachside ADUs must have parking spots unless they are located near a trolley stop or bus line. The move comes in response to a push from the state Coastal Commission, which hopes that ADU residents using parking spaces will reduce tourists' use of beachside parking spots. The Coastal Commission also submitted several others requests, including that the city reviews ADU construction in coastal areas and that property owners alert tenants that they are at risk to sea-level rise.

Los Angeles Bans Political Contributions from Developers
In an effort to reduce corruption, many Los Angeles developers and property owners will be banned from making local political contributions after a new law enforces restrictions if the entity is associated with a "significant planning entitlement" filing in the city and qualifies as a "restricted developer." Once the city has reviewed an application and for the following 12 months, the applicant and associated principals will be prohibited from donating to elected officials, candidates, and committees. If a person or entity is out of compliance, they may not be listed on an application for another 12 months and may face additional penalties.

CP&DR Coverage: New Urbanism Takes Hold in Redlands
The majority of development in the Inland Empire has followed a pattern of low-density sprawl. The City of Redlands, though, is taking aggressive steps to embrace urbanism. A major project designed by a New Urbanist architecture firm is set to remake downtown, replacing a dormant 1970s mall. And, after over ten years of discussion, the city is on the verge of adopting a specific plan to create villages around three rail stops along the forthcoming Arrow line.

Quick Hits & Updates

The San Francisco to San Jose segment of California's high-speed rail project is projected to cost three times the previous cost estimate, rising to $5.3 billion, with the whole project costing a possible $120 billion, according to a new report. The rising costs are largely due to inflation, real estate prices, and supply chain issues.

The potential designation of the western Joshua tree as a threatened species remains unclear after the state Fish and Game Commission left the debate undecided in a 2 to 2 vote. Staff biologists previously recommended against doing so, noting that the impact of climate change on the species was uncertain.

The staff of the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission has recommended approval of the Oakland A's request to redevelop Howard Terminal into a $12 billion waterfront ballpark complex. The first step would involve removing Howard Terminal's 56 acres from port designation.

The Encinitas City Council has approved an updated plan for a 250-unit, multi-story apartment development located in the southern edge of Olivenhain with 50 units designated as affordable. The move comes in response to pressure from Attorney General Rob Bonta and state housing officials.

The pending $400 sale of Point Molate shoreline to the Guidiville Tribe of Pomo Indians and developer Upstream Point Molate LLC is facing turbulence after court officials granted Winehaven Legacy LLC, the previous chosen developer who planned to build thousands of homes on the property, its requested temporary restraining order to prevent the sale.

The Department of Housing and Community Development has released new features in its housing element Annual Progress Report Dashboard, including daily refreshes as local governments submit data, a Timeline Page, Key Figures to aid in progress comprehension, and an option to track headway toward meeting housing requirements.

The cost of sheltering 1,000 unhoused residents at a former Oakland Army Base is not only $22.5 million per year but extreme health risks to future residents, according to a city staff report. The report identified that the cost would approach that of the city's entire homelessness operations and that the site is polluted with lead, arsenic, and kerosene.

A federal judge has approved a settlement between the City of Los Angeles and the LA Alliance for Human Rights that requires the city to commit to spending $3 billion on providing 16,000 beds or housing units to unhoused people within five years. The county's part of the lawsuit has not yet been settled.

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