Cutting Red Tape to Spur More Housing, Lower Costs
This week, the Bay Area Council submitted a letter to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in support of a proposed ordinance by Supervisors Ahsha Safai and Myrna Melgar amending the building code to speed up construction and allow for a streamlined process for site permit issuance, placing limits on the design review required before a site permit is granted. The letter included Council President and CEO Jim Wunderman and Plant Construction CEO and Council Executive Committee member Chris Rivielle as principal signees along with over 40 Bay Area executives from multiple sectors.
A significant amount of construction work is done under site permits in San Francisco, so any streamlining of the permit issuance process will benefit the entire construction and development industry. San Francisco is the slowest jurisdiction in the state in getting projects entitled and a primary contributor to the problem is delayed permit issuance. According to the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD), San Francisco leads every other jurisdiction in the state by a considerable margin in terms of timeline from submission to entitlement and from entitlement to permitting. If the measure passes without significant amendment, it will significantly speed up the process.
This will encourage more development and increase project starts at a time when construction in San Francisco is lagging way behind other major metropolitan areas.