Are you a developer of market-rate housing eyeing a plot of City-owned land? If Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson has his way, you need not apply.
Earlier this week, Wesson introduced a Council motion which calls for all City-owned land identified for housing purposes to be restricted to 100 percent affordable developments starting January 1, 2020.
"Due to the pace at which housing units are created in the City and the sheer quantity of homeless individuals who need housing, moving forward the Council should continue to identify City properties for housing purposes and restrict their use to affordable housing development only," reads the motion. "Further, the City should make all attempts to maximize the number of affordable housing units built on these properties."
Wesson, who is running to succeed Mark Ridley-Thomas on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, notes that the fifth revision of the County's Housing Element allocates just over 82,000 homes to the City of Los Angeles. While the City had already permitted 210 percent of its allocation for above moderate income homes by the end of 2018, it had only met 20 percent of its allocation for very low- and low-income households during the same time period, and just 3 percent of its allocation for moderate income units.
A number of City-owned properties have already been earmarked for the development of affordable and permanent supportive housing, such as the Thatcher Maintenance Yard in Venice, which currently slated for a 98-unit low-income apartment complex, and the former West Los Angeles animal shelter on Bundy Drive, where a similar project is planned.
Notable exceptiosn include properties formerly controlled by CRA/LA, such as the Angels Landing site in Downtown, which is poised for a two-tower complex featuring a hotel, condominiums, and apartments - some of which would be set aside as affordable housing.
Another example, though it would not be affected by Wesson's proposal, is the former site of the Bethune Library near USC, which is slated for a hotel development.
Wesson's motion has been referred to the City Council's Housing Committee for consideration.