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Old 12-02-2017, 10:39 PM
 
18,140 posts, read 11,560,846 times
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Interesting piece from the NYT that details the issues in attempting to solve a housing shortage by adding density to areas with mostly single family homes.


https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/01/b...mily-home.html


It isn't just the zoning issues, but often virulent anti-development sentiment in areas of single family (often detached) homes feel when a proposal comes to tear down such a thing and replace it with multifamily housing on same lot.
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Old 12-03-2017, 11:37 AM
 
359 posts, read 201,806 times
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The pitch in the beginning of our local downtown revitalization was that downtown was pro development. Not only would no one show up at Zoning Board of Adjustment or Planning Commission or Council to oppose you like they would on the edge of town, we'd have the neighborhood group there lobbying on your behalf for variances and incentives. Blew developers minds. I wish I had pictures of the city council's faces when we mustered a hundred people to speak in favor of a zoning change for a 400 unit apartment complex and the Council got 3 hours of pro project testimony and zero negatives. They saw the crowd and were whispering about how to handle the impending riot they thought was going to happen.

I was the first person in remembered history ever appointed to our Planning Commission or ZBA who lived in an apartment. It was shocking the **** people would say if an apartment complex was proposed along the arterial near their neighborhood. On more than one occasion I had to ask people if their contention that apartments were full of drug addicts and criminals included me personally.

Sounds like California needs to shore up it's laws on by right zoning and spot zoning. It's good to see the renters groups organized and willing to sue. Developers are in a terrible position to challenge bad decisions so having advocates on their side willing to make sure that things stay reasonable is important. Without it you'll basically have staff members interpreting the code on a case by case basis without doing a proper rule making procedure that can be appealed or litigated, typically at the behest of neighborhood or council member opposing verbally but not in writing.
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Old 12-03-2017, 11:55 AM
 
Location: TOVCCA
8,262 posts, read 10,466,150 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BugsyPal View Post
It isn't just the zoning issues, but often virulent anti-development sentiment in areas of single family (often detached) homes feel when a proposal comes to tear down such a thing and replace it with multifamily housing on same lot.
Did you read how the "multifamily" units are planned with just one parking spot? C'mon. Even couples have 2 cars. And the high prices of the units means likely roommates, to make the rent. That means that all the extra tenants will be parking on the streets.
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Old 12-03-2017, 12:18 PM
 
1,528 posts, read 718,423 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nightlysparrow View Post
Did you read how the "multifamily" units are planned with just one parking spot? C'mon. Even couples have 2 cars. And the high prices of the units means likely roommates, to make the rent. That means that all the extra tenants will be parking on the streets.
In more densely populated areas, people park in the street. Sun still rises and sets. Birds still fly. Cats till meow.
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Old 12-03-2017, 04:59 PM
 
18,140 posts, read 11,560,846 times
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Originally Posted by just_because View Post
In more densely populated areas, people park in the street. Sun still rises and sets. Birds still fly. Cats till meow.
Actually the subject is one am quite familiar with, as my hometown of Staten Island, NY has become ground zero for the density described in NYT article.


For two or more decades now developers have been knocking down beautiful single family homes and shoehorning two, four or more multifamily housing (usually god awful attached town houses) on same site. That and or when able to get vacant land again developers shove as much multifamily housing as they can get.


Mount Manresa Facts | Save Mount Manresa


In any event the result has been automobile traffic and parking have become a nightmare. Most if not all these developments lack onsite parking and or have only space for one vehicle per household. Since most homes today have at least two (often more) that means something has to go onto the street. People use cones, trash cans, boxes, or whatever to reserve *their* spot in front of a house or building.
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Old 12-03-2017, 08:27 PM
 
Location: The Berk in Denver, CO USA
13,079 posts, read 18,647,246 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nightlysparrow View Post
Did you read how the "multifamily" units are planned with just one parking spot? C'mon. Even couples have 2 cars. And the high prices of the units means likely roommates, to make the rent. That means that all the extra tenants will be parking on the streets.
Moot point in 2060 when all cars are autonomous and humans are not allowed to drive.
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Old 12-04-2017, 07:04 AM
 
1,399 posts, read 983,398 times
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I live in a lightly populated area of single family homes. All of my neighbors have several vehicles that fill their driveways and several overflow on to the street. Hell, even one of my neighbors parks his work truck right under a sign that reads "No parking on access way" Lightly populated or dense cars and parking will be an issue no matter what.
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Old 12-04-2017, 07:59 AM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
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The problem with shoehorning density into traditional SFH areas, in addition to the issues already mentioned, is the strain placed on infrastructure such as water and sewer as well as the power grid, both gas and electric. Sewer and water in particular is planned out decades in advance using current allowable density and increasing capacity isn't just a matter of adding a couple equivalent dwelling units of capacity. That's added, at great expense, in blocks of hundreds.

Also, depending on the area, multifamily placed within SFH areas often causes housing values to decrease or not increase at a normal rate.

What we've found here also is that lenders are hesitant, even during the boom, to place mortgages in areas with large numbers of rentals.
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Old 12-06-2017, 07:01 PM
 
359 posts, read 201,806 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by North Beach Person View Post
The problem with shoehorning density into traditional SFH areas, in addition to the issues already mentioned, is the strain placed on infrastructure such as water and sewer as well as the power grid, both gas and electric. Sewer and water in particular is planned out decades in advance using current allowable density and increasing capacity isn't just a matter of adding a couple equivalent dwelling units of capacity. That's added, at great expense, in blocks of hundreds.

Also, depending on the area, multifamily placed within SFH areas often causes housing values to decrease or not increase at a normal rate.

What we've found here also is that lenders are hesitant, even during the boom, to place mortgages in areas with large numbers of rentals.
Not really. Engineers use fairly broad cushions on these things. Grass uses as much water in a suburban setting as all other uses and if anything suburban areas have flow rate and stagnation problems. Density can lower water use.

Sewer capacity is taxed during rain events(it's designed for large infiltration) not by people flushing toilets and upsizing during replacement costs virtually nothing since digging the hole is the expensive part. That's really only necessary when going to very large buildings. The lines are replaced more often than any city has increased density. Gas and electricity are similar.

If you want to argue cost let's imagine a scenario. Is it cheaper for a electric company to have twice the lines on half the number of poles or the same number of lines on twice as many poles? Pretty obviously it's the scenario where you have fewer poles. Things get cheaper for utilities when they have more customers on the same amount of infrastructure.
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Old 12-07-2017, 07:29 AM
 
Location: Raleigh
6,906 posts, read 5,142,662 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nightlysparrow View Post
Did you read how the "multifamily" units are planned with just one parking spot? C'mon. Even couples have 2 cars. And the high prices of the units means likely roommates, to make the rent. That means that all the extra tenants will be parking on the streets.
Each of the three dwellings has one parking spot. I agree, that two would be a much better solution, but this is nothing new in urban areas. I've seen and lived in places where SFH's have been converted to 3 or even 4 units with 2 parking spots for the entire family. To boot, they are usually rented out by young single adults who each have their own car. People deal.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BugsyPal View Post
Actually the subject is one am quite familiar with, as my hometown of Staten Island, NY has become ground zero for the density described in NYT article.


For two or more decades now developers have been knocking down beautiful single family homes and shoehorning two, four or more multifamily housing (usually god awful attached town houses) on same site. That and or when able to get vacant land again developers shove as much multifamily housing as they can get.


Mount Manresa Facts | Save Mount Manresa


In any event the result has been automobile traffic and parking have become a nightmare. Most if not all these developments lack onsite parking and or have only space for one vehicle per household. Since most homes today have at least two (often more) that means something has to go onto the street. People use cones, trash cans, boxes, or whatever to reserve *their* spot in front of a house or building.
That's been a Chicago tradition for decades, especially when it snows. To Quote Mayor Daley, "If you shovel it out its kinda yours."
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