Sacramento’s New Downtown

November 5, 2016

Interview By Cosmo Garvin

The Sacramento City Council is likely to approve the downtown railyards development plan this Thursday, November 10. Most of the buzz about the project has been around the proposed stadium for the Sacramento Republic soccer team.

The media has paid less attention to the amount and type of housing that will (or won’t) be built there, even though this is probably the most important part of the whole enterprise.

In Cosmo Garvin’s latest podcast, he interviewed Earl Withycombe and Alexandra Reagan of the Environmental Council of Sacramento, who say that “the current plan for the Railyards doesn’t include enough affordable housing, or enough of any kind of housing. They say the project isn’t dense enough, isn’t ambitious enough, about building a transit friendly, environmentally sound, inclusive urban core.”

Read more and listen to the podcast here: https://cosmogarvin.com/sacramentos-new-downtown-186554292a54#.y35z36ha8

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“Leading the Way” on strategies for a more sustainable California

October 27, 2016

Matthew Baker of ECOS led the research for a new report by ClimatePlan called “Leading the Way” on strategies for a more sustainable California

OVERVIEW 

California’s Sustainable Communities and Climate Protection Act of 2008 (SB 375) connects land use and transportation planning with California’s ambitious greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goals. This innovative law requires the state’s 18 Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) to create Sustainable Communities Strategies (SCSs) showing how their regions will meet statemandated GHG reduction targets through changes in land use and transportation.

In many regions, the SCS process has led to innovative policymaking to support healthy, equitable, and sustainable patterns of development. Drawing on reviews of adopted SCSs, as well as extensive input from ClimatePlan partners, transportation planners, and others, this report highlights some of the leading practices that have emerged so far. It also offers recommendations that go beyond existing SCSs in areas such as climate adaptation, water, and affordable housing.

This report was prepared for ClimatePlan by Adam Livingston of Sequoia Riverlands Trust with expert input gathered by Matt Baker of the Environmental Council of Sacramento.

Read the full report here: http://www.climateplan.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Leading-the-Way-Full-Report.pdf

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ECOS Comments on 19J Project

September 5, 2016

ECOS supports the 19J project particularly for its sustainability and “affordable by design” features. We find the urban design features, building scale and location to have an approach consistent with the intent of the City General Plan, despite its modest height increase beyond the Plan’s approved limits. We recommend approval of the project, but strongly recommend that three conditions be applied to its approval.

  1. A deed restriction shall be recorded whereby the rental cost of the 300 to 445 square foot units shall not exceed 30% of Sacramento’s median income.
  2. A deed restriction shall also be recorded stating that no units shall be sold for 15 years from the date of initial occupancy.
  3. Approval of the project shall require that the project owner/operators submit an annual report to the Planning Department verifying compliance with conditions 1 & 2 above.

We believe that in order to maintain the integrity of the project, these conditions must be applied.

View our letter here.

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