Matthew Lickona 6 p.m., Nov. 17
Planning Commission Unanimously Approves "Granny Flats" But Are "Granny Flats" Just Code For Condos and Mini-DormsCongratulations to the Planning Commission in its effort to change the Companion Unit regulations. Eliminating the "double lot size" ; allowing concurrent building of both units (cost-effective); the parking and owner occupancy requirements are all realistic, sensible and protective recommendations to make the rules workable. There has been a draft of these changes sitting dormant since 2007 waiting for a Council President to put it on the Council's Agenda. Let's hope Council President Tony Young will move on this issue very soon. There is a new mix on the Council smart enough to realize that mini-dorms and granny flats are not comparable, that the city won't be flooded with "granny flat" permits and ruin residential neighborhoods, that these units count toward the state-required affordable units quota, and that re-assessments on these building additions can add to the city's shrinking coffers. Speaking of state-required quotas, think of all the thousands of illegal "granny flats" which could actually be counted to give a more realistic picture of San Diego's housing affordability quotient. The information on the website, San Diego Issues, is outdated. It is interesting to note that many cities have progressed in their thinking since then and have promoted ADU's as a way to solve housing issues for a depressing economy and changing demography. Portland has gone so far as to eliminate fees for three years on ADU's. Seattle experimented by allowing ADU's in certain communities and has now expanded its reach because of acceptance by its voters. Santa Cruz is nationally recognized for its ADU program. If regulations are required, then at least make them ones that are workable.
— May 28, 2011 11:59 a.m.
— November 2, 2010 5:09 p.m.
— November 1, 2010 3:16 p.m.