A roundup of news and multimedia from the Unfamiliar Terrain team:
- The Luxury Shopping Oasis Emerging in San Francisco’s Struggling Downtown (Wall Street Journal): Although local foot traffic may be down, high-end stores are filled with luxury-shopping tourists.
- Here’s Mayor Breed’s new plan to fill vacant storefronts near Union Square (San Francisco Chronicle): Detailing the Mayor’s plans to revitalize Union Square’s retail shopping district.
- Breed, Melgar announce legislation to end ‘arbitrary’ density limits across San Francisco (San Francisco Business Times): A new plan for more units on residential parcels without raising height limits.
- Architect Peter Pfau aims for design that elevates – sometimes literally (San Francisco Business Times): Insight into the architectural efforts to design and redevelop Dogpatch’s Pier 70 amid rising sea levels and climate change.
- ‘Not what it used to be’: How downtown Oakland’s recovery compares to San Francisco’s (San Francisco Chronicle): Taking stock of Oakland’s downtown and considering where its leaders hope it can go.
- Why Oakland’s Struggling Office Market Was Good News for This Black-Owned Business (San Francisco Standard): Showcasing one community-oriented organization’s push to establish even deeper roots in The Town.
- Oakland Can Use Its Work on the Proposed Howard Terminal Ballpark to Realize Inclusive Growth (SPUR): Describing why Howard Terminal is still a strong candidate for a range of future development projects.
- Thao administration is hiring first ‘permits ombudsman’ (San Francisco Business Times): The latest effort attempting to revamp Oakland’s permitting process.
- A Tale of Paradise, Parking Lots and My Mother’s Berkeley Backyard (The New York Times Magazine): A North Berkeley vignette of some of the causes and effects of the Bay Area’s housing crisis.
- A Bay Area homebuilder planned a project with union rules. Can it work anywhere else? (CalMatters): Examining whether California should simultaneously encourage developers to build housing while also requiring them to employ union labor.
- Walnut Creek has 1.3 million square feet of vacant office space. A new plan offers a big idea. (San Francisco Business Times): Behind the plan to encourage the conversion of Walnut Creek’s older, lower-quality office buildings into medical office buildings.
California and Beyond
- Amid the population exodus, California saw housing construction boom during pandemic (Los Angeles Times): New data show the state experienced its biggest increase in housing construction since 2008 – but is it enough?
- New Pathways to Encourage Housing Production: A Review of California’s Recent Housing Legislation (Terner Center for Housing Innovation): A deep dive examining whether new laws are influencing housing production.
- Arizona Limits New Construction in Phoenix Area, Citing Shrinking Water Supply (New York Times): What happens when there’s not enough groundwater to go around?
- Imagine a Renters’ Utopia. It Might Look Like Vienna. (New York Times): Lessons learned in a city that has largely avoided a housing crisis.