Shaping Housing Policy, Advocacy, and Development: Collaboration with the California Coalition for Rural Housing
For the past several years, the CRC has enjoyed a collaboration with the California Coalition for Rural Housing (CCRH) as a way to support affordable housing developers, advocates, and policymakers at the frontlines of affordable housing production, preservation, and protection across the state. Based in Sacramento, CCRH is one of the oldest low-income housing coalitions in the country, working to promote and preserve affordable housing and sustainable, healthy communities throughout Rural California. CCRH’s programs focuses on advocacy, community asset building, research and education, and technical assistance on how to access and use the myriad housing programs available to farmworker, tribal, and rural communities. Two projects that the CRC team has assisted with include the San Joaquin Valley Healthy Homes Project and the Inclusionary Housing Database.
San Joaquin Valley Healthy Homes Project
Research shows that the more a household spends on housing, the less they have for other necessities that improve health outcomes, such as high quality food, medicine, and health care. Additionally, housing that is close to “high-amenity” resources – such as access to public transportation, schools, and healthy food options – also affects overall health. Unfortunately, sites identified for affordable housing development are frequently far removed from these key amenities. With these concerns in mind, CCRH partnered with the CRC, with generous funding from the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund, to map locations of high amenity sites for affordable housing developments in the San Joaquin Valley. This process included gathering parcel and zoning data in the 8-county region, overlaying these data with key high-amenity locations, and identifying high-density, residential parcels within certain distances of these key amenities. One of the many findings from this research is that of all the parcels analyzed across the San Joaquin Valley, only 8% were high-amenity, and only 4% were both high-amenity and zoned for higher housing density. The CRC created an interactive, online map to display the results, and the maps can be used by residents, advocates, developers, city staff, and elected officials. With the assistance of Ted Bradshaw Scholar, Samar Lichtenstein, the CRC also published an accompanying Story Map. The hope of this research and mapping process is to explore questions regarding land use and equity and to provide guidance when advocating for funding for affordable housing developments.
Inclusionary Housing Database
The California Inclusionary Housing Programs Searchable Database is a collaborative project between the CRC and the California Coalition for Rural Housing (CCRH). This online database documents and maps 150 inclusionary housing policies across the state and allows users to filter results using over 30 program and jurisdictional characteristics, including the percentage of affordable units required by income band, percentage of affordable units required by tenure type, unit number thresholds triggering IH requirements, income-targeting, term of affordability, alternative compliance methods, and more. Users can also select programs in jurisdictions with similar population size and geographic regions. The map identifies where in California these policies exist, and the pop-up panel provides detailed information about each policy. Users can then export selected policies into a table or spatial format for their own use. This publicly accessible web application informs stakeholders and helps make the case for inclusive communities where everyone, including disadvantaged populations, will have access to decent and affordable homes in good locations.
For more background on this project and instructions on how to use the database, see the Inclusionary Housing User Manual. For the full national inclusionary housing database, including fee-based programs, visit Grounded Solutions' Inclusionary Housing Map & Program Database.