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What’s ‘success’ mean in the Mission? First, an end to the evictions

April 13, 2015

48hillsonline – excerpt

Large crowd at the Chron’s Mission Forum makes it clear that protecting existing residents and businesses is the top priority — and that might mean a temporary halt to development

FEBRUARY 25, 2015 — The Chron held its much-publicized forum on the future of the Mission last night, and the response from the audience suggested there will be a lot of support for a move to limit new development in the neighborhood.

The room was packed, with hundreds of people watching the Chron’s 20-minute video on the changes in the Mission and then hearing a panel talk about some of the issues. I can complain about the Chron coverage — at no point did any reporter confront a greedy landlord or speculator on camera and ask how they feel about destroying a community. The disaster of displacement in the Mission seemed almost like an act of God — it just happens, and there are no bad guys.

But at least the paper is talking about displacement, and while there were a few really lame people on the panel, there were also some very good people speaking. Erick Arguello, the president of Calle24, set the tone for the discussion when he said that the goal of his group is to “make sure our people are able to stay.”…

And Arguella, Marti, and Granados all agreed: What we are doing now – letting the private market determine housing in the Mission – isn’t working. It’s a crisis, and something dramatic has to change.

Joe Garofoli, one of the Chron reporters on the project, asked a good question: What would success look like? Marti had the clear and obvious answer:

“Success is when not a single person gets evicted, there’s no more speculation, and we build housing in balance with job growth.”

Everyone applauded – because to most of the people who showed up for the event, Marti articulated the issue that has to be at the center of any debate: People who live in the neighborhood now, and don’t want to leave, shouldn’t be forced out to make room for people with more money.

Simple concept. Everyone in the room seemed to get it. Amazingly hard to get across at City Hall sometimes.

District Nine Supervisor David Campos was offered the chance to address the panel, and he talked about the Calle24 proposals. He noted that he’s been criticized for calling for a moratorium on development when he hasn’t even introduced a bill yet.

But the “key assumption by the attackers,” he said, is that supply-side economics, Ronald Reagan’s theory, actually works. “You build luxury homes, and somehow that will trickle down … it’s voodoo housing, the idea that you can have affordable housing even if you don’t build affordable housing.”…

There seems to be a bit of confusion about the role Campos is playing in the proposed development for the 16th Street BART station. The developer made a mistake and included him as a sponsor of a March 4 meeting. The likes of Michael Petrelis are demanding that he take a stand.

All of this shows a deep misunderstanding of how the Board of Supervisors works.

There’s no doubt in my mind that whatever the Planning Commission decides on the Maximus development, it will wind up getting appealed to the supes. That’s typical with big projects that require environmental review and conditional-use authorization.

When that happens, the board members are sitting in a quasi-judicial role, hearing an appeal of another city agency’s ruling. If any member has already taken a position for or against the project, he or she can be forced to accept recusal and sit it out.

This project will be controversial, and the vote on the board could be close. Campos would be highly irresponsible to take a position for or against the project today when that could jeopardize his vote on it later, when it matters… (more)

This explanation of how the Board of Supervisors works has been pointed out twice. Hopefully somebody is paying attention by now.

SF’s housing crisis, the talk of Miami: Planners and academics from all over the world are looking at SF and saying:WTF?
By Tim Redmond: “I got the impression it’s a question scholars all over the world are trying to ponder: If San Francisco is among the most progressive cities in the nation, how did we so utterly fail to preserve affordable housing – and why is city policy driven by the tech industry and trickle-down economics?”… Why is nobody challenging Ed Lee for mayor? They’re asking it in Miami, and we ought to be asking it at home.”

One Comment leave one →
  1. April 13, 2015 1:37 am

    Reblogged this on Crossroads West.


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