In ABAG’s first draft of the allocation plan, the City of Oakley would be required to approve 1,163 new housing units, which breaks down to 311 very-low-income housing units; 171 low-income; 171 moderate-income and 509 above-moderate-income. In order to accommodate ABAG’s request, the city would need to build within some of its Priority Development Areas.
“Oakley is concerned with the high number of overall units allocated to the city, specifically the high number of low- and very-low-income units,” wrote Senior Planner Joshua McMurray in the staff report.
Oakley’s Priority Development Areas are not designated for housing. These areas have been designated for retail and business development in the General Plan, and to meet ABAG’s request, the city must undergo a General Plan amendment to meet the new requirements.
In the response letter, to be signed by City Manager Bryan Montgomery on behalf of the council, the council notes that most of the 798 acres available for development in Oakley are a part of the city’s “employment” priority development area. One of the largest areas, the Dupont property located off of Bridgehead Road, is mainly wetlands and in a floodplain region ill-suited for housing. Oakley has been compliant with ABAG’s requests in the past, but now the city wants to focus on providing employment opportunities for its more than 30,000 residents.
The response letter states: “Oakley is very apprehensive with the draft Regional Housing Needs Allocation as it relates to the economy as it suggests multiple acres of land will need to be rezoned to accommodate a large number of higher density units that might never be built and would occupy land needed to create jobs.”
Since 1980, state law has required each town, city and unincorporated area to plan for its share of the state’s housing needs for people of all income levels. ABAG oversees development in Contra Costa County as well as Alameda, Marin, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano and Sonoma counties. The draft allocation report proposes 187,990 new housing units by October of 2022.
The ABAG Executive Board presented the draft allocation report on May 17 and will accept feedback through June 30. The board will meet July 19 to discuss all feedback received. A revised report will be issued following that meeting and public comment will be received through September. A final allocations report is scheduled to be approved by ABAG by May of 2013.