Who will control land use in California?

April 29, 2018

California, state officials say, needs to be building 180,000 new units of housing a year to keep up with population growth, replace housing that’s lost to fire and old age and make a dent in the backlog. However, the state is scarcely meeting 60 percent of that goal and is particularly deficient in low- and moderate-income housing.

The biggest impediment to building more housing is resistance within local governments that control land use. City councils and other elected bodies reflect their voters’ disdain for having more neighbors that would bring more traffic and other consequences of population growth, a syndrome especially virulent when it comes to high-density “affordable” projects.