January 13, 2020

What SB 50 Will Do

1) “Neighborhood Multi-Family Areas” SB 50 bans single-family zoning. Developers and global investors could buy out blocks in almost all single-family neighborhoods in California, to erect lucrative 4-unit market-rate buildings. And if a single-family area is dubbed “transit rich” or “jobs-rich," investors can build much larger multi-story buildings.

2) “Transit-Rich Areas” Developers and global investors could override city zoning near rail stops and frequent bus stops to erect 4-story to 8-story towers with few affordable units. To boost developer/investor profits, SB 50 requires no parking in apartment complexes near rail.

3) “Jobs-Rich Areas” Developers and investors can override zoning in jobs-rich/good schools areas that have no transit, allowing 4-story to 8-story towers with few affordable units.

4) “Carve-out Counties” Legislators negotiated an SB 50 escape clause for a few mostly upscale NoCal counties including Marin County, which will be required to approve MUCH more modest new density.

5) “10-Unit Exemption” Under SB 50 incentives granted by the State, investors and developers who build all-luxury projects with less than 11 units would be richly rewarded. UCLA Professor Michal Storper calls it a profound gentrification gift for land flippers and investors, dubbed “Zoning Shock Therapy.”

6) “Density Bonus Powers” The San Francisco Planning Dept. identified the key profit-boosting override powers granted to developers and investors under SB 50. YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD would be subject to automatic override, letting developers ignore up to 6 local land-use rules. Overrides would include but not be limited to:

  • Floor area ratio - Developers can OVERRIDE CITY SIZE restrictions, adding 47% to 297% to building sizes.
  • Parking - Developers can erect big apartment complexes with NO PARKING.
  • Standards: Developers can toss out ANY CITY STANDARD (design, sustainability, earthquake, safety, materials) that is not a state law.
  • Onsite open-space - Developers can IGNORE required courtyards and balconies.
  • Historic buildings - Developers can DEMOLISH homes not on the CA Registry of Historic Resources.
  • Setbacks - Developers can SLASH THE BREATHING ROOM cities require for trees, green belts, side yards.

Senate Bill 50 is Propelled by Meaningless Data and Sacramento Panic

See and share this SB 50 Map that shows the real impact on all of us. Type in your own address to see what happens on your own street. Print it out, email it, and spread the word. The media has not done its jobs on this radical, societal-level attack on communities.