Summary Report to Boost Infill, Renewables, Energy Efficiency and Farmland in Fresno and Beyond

Sustainable Fresno Report -- Feb 2016 CoverFresno, CA – The Council of Infill Builders released a new summary of steps that Fresno leaders and state officials can take to boost infill development, renewable energy deployment, and energy efficiency retrofits, while preserving farmland.  The summary report resulted from an evening discussion at Fresno State on January 21st, featuring state and local officials, business leaders, policy advocates, and other land use experts in Fresno and surrounding communities. You can read more about that event here.  “Sustainable Jobs in Sustainable Industries: Opportunities for Fresno” provides action items for state and local leaders on each of these critical topics.  For more information, please see the PowerPoint presentations from the evening event here.


Governor Brown Signs Council of Infill Builders’ Bill to Limit Parking Requirements for Affordable Housing Near Transit

Meea Kang, DirectorOn October 9th, Governor Brown signed Assembly Bill 744 (Chau): “Planning and Zoning: Density Bonus,” which will allow developers to request reduced minimum parking requirements for affordable housing projects near transit. The measure will help California implement its climate goals in AB 32 and land use and transportation plans in SB 375. Council of Infill Builders board member Meea Kang was instrumental in achieving this success, which updates California’s Density Bonus law to allow developments to build less parking if they maintain a portion of their units as affordable to low income residents and are near good quality transit. “I am so thrilled the Governor signed AB 744,” commented Kang. “AB 744 is a common sense reform that lowers parking requirements to boost affordable housing production near quality transit.”

The bill also amends the parking ratio for affordable housing and senior housing to require no more than 0.5 parking spaces per unit, and it amends the ratio for special needs housing to require no more than 0.3 parking spaces per unit. Partner organizations were critical to the this success, including AARP, Local Government Commission, TransForm, Circulate San Diego, American Planning Association, California Council for Affordable Housing, California Economic Summit, and Enterprise Community Partners, as well as individuals like Professor Donald Shoup of UCLA and Jeffery Tumlin of Nelson Nygaard, among many others. For more information, please see the full bill text and fact sheet from the California legislature.


New Bringing Downtown Back Report Released
Bringing Downtown Back Report Cover

Sacramento, CA – The Council of Infill Builders released a new report that identifies key barriers and recommends solutions for investing in the once-vibrant city centers of San Joaquin Valley communities. “Bringing Downtown Back: Ways to Boost Infill Development in the San Joaquin Valley” resulted from a convening of Valley builders, public officials, financial leaders, and land use experts in Fresno to identify the challenges cities face in efforts to meet the emerging demand for walkable, convenient neighborhoods. For more details, visit our Bringing Downtown Back page. View the Press Release.



SmartSpace Brings Infill to a New Level

Smart Space CoverSan Francisco, CA – Developer Patrick Kennedy of Panoramic Interests used four years of research and development to design the first pre-fab, micro-apartment project in the United States. The project objectives include: maximizing productive value of a constrained, in-fill development site; delivering car-free, affordable, entry-level housing, close to public transit and jobs; minimizing construction waste, environmental impact, and disruption to neighborhood; achieving LEED Platinum, maximize sustainability, and minimize energy consumption; demonstrating market viability of well-designed micro-apartments. The project has already been recognized for its innovation. Learn more about the project: SmartSpace and its Planning Aspects.


Central Valley Housing Study Released

A Home for Everyone Report CoverBakersfield, CA – The Council of Infill Builders released a new study of forecasted housing demand in the Central Valley through 2050, showing that the Valley will need significantly more compact, walkable homes to meet future demand. For more details, visit our Reports page.