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City of Sacramento 2021–2029 Housing Element

Ascent assisted the City of Sacramento with its sixth cycle Housing Element update. We led all aspects of the update, including updating the sites inventory and facilitating meetings with an external housing stakeholder working group. The Housing Element demonstrates capacity to accommodate nearly 46,000 units, an 89 percent increase from the previous RHNA. The City has already taken several bold steps to increase housing supply, including making dramatic changes to the Development Code to allow ministerial approval of multifamily housing projects of up to 200 units. The updated Housing Element is an important opportunity for the City to address housing policy issues in a comprehensive manner and develop a bold yet implementable housing strategy.

Throughout the project, Ascent maintained close communication with HCD staff to ensure that the methodology and assumptions for the sites inventory and projection of accessory dwelling units would be acceptable to HCD. This communication helped to avoid surprises during the HCD review process. We also worked hard to ensure that the process was transparent by providing preliminary drafts of the sites inventory and policies and programs to affordable housing advocates and other members of the housing stakeholder committee and by meeting one on one to answer questions and gather feedback. This approach helped to ensure broader community support as the Housing Element moved through the review and adoption process.

A Focus on Equity, Inclusion, and Anti-Displacement

Sacramento’s most vulnerable communities, including low- and middle-income households and communities of color, continue to be disproportionately affected by the housing crisis. The themes of equity, inclusion, and anti-displacement are woven throughout the Housing Element and its adopted policies and programs. In accordance with new state laws, the City prepared a fair housing assessment to analyze historic practices and current trends that have led to segregation and unequal housing opportunity. The City of Sacramento Housing Element was developed prior to the release of HCD’s Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing guidance document, leaving the City with little guidance during the preparation of the plan.

All policies and programs were viewed through an equity lens, and new policies and programs were added to demonstrate the City’s commitment to ensuring opportunities for affordable housing are dispersed more equitably throughout the city, transforming racially and ethnically concentrated areas of poverty into areas of opportunity, and as neighborhood investments increase, protecting residents from displacement.

The City of Sacramento became the first city in the state to be designated a pro-housing jurisdiction by HCD. 

Details
Client
City of Sacramento
Services
Location
Sacramento, California
Awards

Sacramento Valley Section American Planning Association: Comprehensive Plan, Large Jurisdiction – Award of Merit

Project Contact

Chelsey Payne, AICP
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