Publications

Controversial New Law Opens Door To More Residential Development In California

October 19, 2022 Articles
Bisnow

It has been praised as a long-overdue step to address California’s chronic housing shortage, while others have called it the “worst bill of the year.”

But regardless of public opinion, the Affordable Housing and High Road Jobs Act of 2022 is expected to have a dramatic impact on multifamily development in the state when it takes effect next summer.

Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the act, also known as Assembly Bill 2011, on Sept. 28, along with Senate Bill 6, the Middle-Class Housing Act. Together, the two new laws will allow housing to be built on sites that local governments currently zone for retail, office or parking purposes, and in many cases the laws will allow housing developments to avoid review under the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA. In addition, workers who build these new homes must be paid prevailing — that is, union — wages and given health benefits.

“This could potentially unlock a tremendous number of sites for residential development that have previously been reserved, by virtue of zoning, for retail or office development,” said Charles “C.J.” Higley, a partner with Northern California law firm Farella Braun + Martel LLP.

Read the full article on Bisnow here.

Firm Highlights

News

Housing Action Coalition and Farella Braun + Martel File Lawsuit Challenging the City of San Mateo’s Housing Element

Today, the Housing Action Coalition (HAC) and Farella Braun + Martel LLP filed a lawsuit against the City of San Mateo, challenging its recently adopted Housing Element in order to make the city comply with...

Read More
Publication

San Francisco Board of Supervisors Passes Housing Fee Reform Legislation

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors took the first of two votes to approve housing fee reform legislation last week. The legislation reduces by as much as a third the affordable housing fees and...

Read More
Publication

Downtown San Francisco Adaptive Reuse Legislation Slated To Go Into Effect

As we alerted you on May 9 , legislation to incentivize office and commercial building conversions to housing had begun working its way through the Board of Supervisors after approval by the San Francisco...

Read More
News

San Mateo signed off on its housing element this week. It's already facing a lawsuit.

Farella's Tom Mayhew, CJ Higley, Daniel Contreras, Vanessa Ing, and Alyssa Netto were mentioned in the Daily Journal article "San Mateo signed off on its housing element this week. It's already facing a lawsuit."...

Read More
Publication

AB 1633: The Housing Accountability Act

The Housing Accountability Act (HAA) requires local agencies to approve housing projects that meet objective zoning, general plan, subdivision, and design standards unless there is a specific, adverse impact upon public health and safety...

Read More
Publication

California Court Issues First Decision Addressing Builder’s Remedy; Decision on Related Lawsuit Pending

The first California court decision to issue declaratory relief to a developer under the “builder’s remedy” appears to be on the horizon. The builder’s remedy has garnered significant attention over the past two years...

Read More