Sonoma County seeks Housing Sites for Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs)
Dec 26, 2018
As the County continues our initiative to produce more housing, we need your help in finding sites. If sites meet our criteria, we will work with the owner and community to rezone them for more density with design review to ensure quality and community compatibility. Here’s what we need.
· Unincorporated county land (outside of city limits)
· Vacant or underutilized properties (i.e. large site with small home)
· Located in an area that has public sewer and water
· Walking distance to transit, services and jobs
“We need bold action to achieve housing equity in Sonoma County,” stated James Gore, Chairman of the Board of Supervisors. “This includes revisiting zoning to encourage more city and community-centered housing development while respecting community separators and urban growth boundaries.”
This rezoning effort will implement the County’s 2014 Housing Element and promote General Plan community-centered growth policies. Permit Sonoma will seek public input and conduct environmental review of qualifying sites, culminating in public hearings before the Sonoma County Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors.
We hear you!
Thanks to everyone that responded to the County’s request for help in identifying potential sites in unincorporated areas to rezone for housing. As of 1/4/19, we received submissions for 42 parcels to evaluate for rezoning. Of those parcels in the unincorporated area, there is a total of about 100 acres with a potential for approximately 2,000 new housing units.
We are now reviewing these sites to determine whether they meet the criteria for rezoning for higher density, affordable, or workforce housing. We will then begin conducting environmental review of qualifying sites.
You are encouraged to continue to submit your ideas for potential sites at http://sonomacounty.ca.gov/PermitSonoma/HousingSites. For information on these initiatives, please contact Nina Bellucci at Nina.Bellucci@sonoma-county.org.
To learn more about the Permit Sonoma’s housing initiatives and submit a site for consideration, please visit .
For information on these initiatives, please contact Nina Bellucci at .
Accessory Dwelling Units Should an Ordinance Encourage the Development of ADUs?
Yes, ADU law and recent changes intend to address barriers, streamline approval and expand potential capacity for ADUs recognizing their unique importance in addressing California’s housing needs. The preparation, adoption, amendment and implementation of local ADU ordinances must be carried out consistent with Government Code Section 65852.150:
The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(1) Accessory dwelling units are a valuable form of housing in California.
(2) Accessory dwelling units provide housing for family members, students, the elderly, in-home health care providers, the disabled, and others, at below market prices within existing neighborhoods.
(3) Homeowners who create accessory dwelling units benefit from added income, and an increased sense of security.
(4) Allowing accessory dwelling units in single-family or multifamily residential zones provides additional rental housing stock in California.
(5) California faces a severe housing crisis.
(6) The state is falling far short of meeting current and future housing demand with serious consequences for the state’s economy, our ability to build green infill consistent with state greenhouse gas reduction goals, and the well-being of our citizens, particularly lower and middle-income earners.
(7) Accessory dwelling units offer lower cost housing to meet the needs of existing and future residents within existing neighborhoods, while respecting architectural character.
(8) Accessory dwelling units are, therefore, an essential component of California’s housing supply.
It is the intent of the Legislature that an accessory dwelling unit ordinance adopted by a local agency has the effect of providing for the creation of accessory dwelling units and that provisions in this ordinance relating to matters including unit size, parking, fees, and other requirements, are not so arbitrary, excessive, or burdensome so as to unreasonably restrict the ability of homeowners to create accessory dwelling units in zones in which they are authorized by local ordinance.
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