With LB Council (Again) Mum, State Senate Committee Advances AB 1401 That Would Prohibit Cities From Applying Parking Minimums On Residential, Comm'l And Other Developments Within Half Mile Walking Distance of Public Transit
State Senator Umberg abstains in Committee ("no vote recorded"); bill has already passed Assembly 51-17-11 with O'Donnell voting "no," Rendon voting "yes" and Gipson "no vote recorded"
|(July 8, 2021, 3:57 p.m.) -- The state Senate Housing Committee today (July 8) voted 6-2 -- with state Senator Tom Umberg (D, SE LB-west OC) abstaining ("no vote recorded") -- to advance AB 1401 that would prohibit local governments in counties with over 600,000 residents (such as LA County and OC) to prohibit applying parking requirements for residential, commercial and other developments if the parcel is within one-half mile walking distance of major public transit stops.
AB 1401 would effectively remove the ability of the City of Long Beach and other LA County cities to require a developer of a multi-unit residential or commercial building (presumably even a high rise tower) to provide parking if the building is within a half mile from a frequent bus or train stop.
The bill also provides that if a project provides parking voluntarily, a public agency may impose requirements on that voluntary parking to require spaces for car share vehicles, requires spaces to be shared with the public or require parking owners to charge for parking.
Today's Housing Committee vote advances AB 1401 to the state Senate Appropriations Committee (a non-policy committee/state budget gatekeeper) one step from the state Senate floor. The bill's state Senate co-authors are Scott Wiener (D, SF) and Nancy Skinner (D, Berkeley.)
On June 1, AB 1401 passed the Assembly on a 51-17-11 vote, with LB area Assemblyman Patrick O'Donnell voting "no", Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D, NLB-Paramount) voting "yes", and Assemblyman Mike Gipson (D, NLB-Carson) recorded as "no vote recorded."
Among those voting "yes" was Assemblyman Kevin Kiley (R, Rocklin), who announced yesterday he's among the candidates seeking to replace Newsom in the upcoming recall election.
The Long Beach City Council (again) remained silent as AB 1401 advanced. (The bill has been pending since Feb. 19, 2021.) The LB Council's "state legislation committee [Uranga, Austin, Richardson] didn't discuss AB 1401 and no incumbent LB Councilmember agendized the bill for a LB policy position. City management also failed to oppose the bill despite the LB Council-approved 2021 "state legislative agenda" that recites City opposition to bills that reduce local control including on land use issues.
[Scroll down for further.]
Supporters of AB 1401 argued that housing is more important than parking, an argument commonly offered by "urbanists" who say parking requirements increase the cost of building new housing. The Committee's legislative analysis includes a statement by AB 1401 author Assemblywoman Laura Friedman (D, Burbank/Glendale) which states:
California is experiencing a housing crisis and we need to consider all options to reduce the overall cost of housing. There are plenty of communities that have access to high-quality transit, or where cars are underutilized, that need housing far more than they need parking. Yet, many cities require residential or commercial developments to provide on-site parking. Apartments must include one or two parking spots per unit, and commercial properties must provide one space for every 100-200 square feet (frequently causing more space to be provided for parking than for the business itself). Mandatory parking requirements have led to an oversupply of parking spaces; Los Angeles County has 18.6 million parking spaces, or almost two for every resident. These requirements worsen California’s housing shortage by raising the cost of housing. On average, garages cost $24,000-$34,000 per space to build, a cost passed on to households regardless of whether they own a car. Additionally, on-site parking takes up space that could otherwise be used for additional units. AB 1401 doesn't prohibit property owners from building on-site parking. Rather, it would give them the flexibility to decide how much parking to provide, instead of requiring them to comply with a one-size-fits-all mandate.
The legislative analysis sums up opposition as follows:
A coalition of housing and equity advocates are opposed to this bill unless it is amended to take into account zero parking minimums already provided to 100% affordable projects under state density bonus law. This coalition writes that these existing benefits provide a competitive edge for these projects in many markets, which would be eliminated by this bill. Several local governments and community groups are opposed because parking requirements should be established at the local level based on community needs and because parking should be project specific.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Recommend LBREPORT.com to your Facebook friends:
Follow LBReport.com with:
Contact us: mail@LBReport.com