The Possibilities of Zoning

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

Webster defines zoning as “dividing into zones, tracts or areas according to existing characteristics or as distinguished for some purpose.”   In today’s urban environments, it’s the last five words in the definition of zoning that really matter – for housing, at least.  Indeed, it’s those five words – as distinguished for some purpose – that […]

Read more

Soaring Building Costs Are Slowing Housing Recovery

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

By all accounts, California is in the depths of a crisis.  Affordable housing can’t be found in the state’s growing job centers – enjoying an economic renaissance of sorts but with no place to house a burgeoning workforce.  To preserve that welcome growth, now, more than ever, there is a need to build additional housing, […]

Read more

Rent Control Initiative Likely on 2020 Ballot

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

Housing activists are at it again.  After seeing last year’s ballot measure – Proposition 10 – go down in flames, they’re taking another run at establishing statewide rent control.  Recently, last year’s losing side submitted a market-constraining draft initiative for the 2020 ballot to the state attorney general (AG) for “title and summary”.   The […]

Read more

Remembering Reagan, and the Heroes of D-Day

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

Today, as I write this column I’m reminded of a weekend some time ago when – then a lobbyist for homebuilders – I set out to write a regular commentary but was distracted by the news of Ronald Reagan’s death.  Fifteen years have ensued since I heard of the great man’s passing but I remember […]

Read more

Anti-NIMBY Legislation Dead for Year

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

SB 50, the controversial bill to mandate high-density housing near transit hubs, recently failed to pass the Senate Committee on Appropriations.  Though the bill is likely dead for the year, its author – Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) – vowed to bring it back before the legislative session ends in September. That could be a […]

Read more

Housing Markets and the State

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

Each year, the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) promulgates what’s known as the RHNA (Regional Housing Needs Assessment).  As the title of the report suggests, the RHNA announces to regional governments in California – councils of governments (COGs) – their housing goals for the next eight years or so. To complete the […]

Read more

Guess What? California Needs More Housing

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

The major findings of a recently released report came as no surprise to most of us:  California needs more housing – lots of it. This, by the way, comes on the heels of enactment of a package of bills to, presumably, solve the problem.  That’s what we were told, anyway, by state legislators after they […]

Read more

Mayor Laments Climate Change as San Jose Withers

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

“Calling all California residents!  Get ready to shut off your kitchen stove.  Then, turn off with your water heater. Done? Now, shut down your central heater.   All right then, go put on a jacket, sit down and keep quiet for awhile.” That’s the message coming from the mayor of the City of San Jose, Sam […]

Read more

Where Fees on New Housing Go

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

If you’re a builder in California the most obvious costs you pay for a housing project’s approval are fees, development impact fees. These fees are purportedly assessed to cover the charges associated with the new housing being built. And, if you’re building anywhere near an urban area you’re paying a lot of them. Indeed, the […]

Read more

Some Good News on the Wildfire Front

Timothy L. Coyle
Consultant specializing in housing issues

As fire raced up hillsides and down ravines in Northern and Southern California recently – killing dozens of individuals, destroying whole communities and leaving countless people homeless – residents of Stevenson Ranch in the Santa Clarita area of the state must have thought back to nearly twelve years earlier when a similar conflagration roared through […]

Read more