The American Institute of Architects San Diego

Year of Housing.

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The Year of Housing – Solutions to Meet San Diego’s Housing Challenge

In the spirit of the principal mission, duty, and obligation of the American Institute of Architects to be of ever-increasing service to society and promote excellence in the built environment, the AIA San Diego and AIA Palomar Chapters have proposed an event to take place on November 4-5 titled “Housing the Next 1 Million in San Diego County – An Exploration of Housing Growth through Visualizations of Population Distribution, City of New Villages, and Lean Housing as a Regional Urban Design Charrette. The intent is to elevate the discussion and strategize how to prioritize and develop a set of solutions and templates to address this housing challenge and its impact on our future.  Leading 12 geographically set teams, Architect’s will explore, analyze, and demonstrate, together with other multi-disciplinary volunteers, using analysis, programming, design and planning studies. Specifically, San Diego County needs to prepare for the natural demographic growth that SANDAG has calculated, so by 2050, the County will need to be prepared to accommodate another million people.  Realize that most of those will be born here.  This growth translates to the need for 400,000 more housing units to be built in the county by 2050.

The goal for this free workshop is to educate the team members (who are multi-disciplinary team volunteers including architects, planners, landscape architects, engineers, students, faculty, community representatives, builders, developers, regulators, bankers, realtors, and others to comprise 12 teams), to better understand

  1. The critical inter-relationships between Public Health, walkability/mobility, healthy non-toxic buildings and the built/natural environment;
  2. The importance of adding Senior Housing and services in proposed growth neighborhoods;
  3. How services and permanent transitional housing for the poor and homeless can be centered around public transit stops, where 400,000 new housing units will be located in the County;
  4. How the next million people can sustainably coexist.

Housing Affordability has become the most important issue for 2017 across San Diego County and branded the “Year of Housing” by many around the region.  Earlier last year an entity called “Housing YOU Matters” was established as a broad coalition of leadership groups who committed to work together to find solutions for making housing at all price points more economically feasible to develop, design and build.  The core members include the Building Industry Association, ULI, the San Diego Architectural Foundation, AIA San Diego, and over 40 other groups.  As an alliance, the core group has created a yearlong series of conferences, workshops and events to elevate the conversation about Housing Affordability and Reform in the Housing Industry to the public stage, framed around the title “Housing San Diego’s Future.”

 

2017 Housing Affordability Conferences … Connect the Dots

  • Jan  – Council Members on Housing (C-3)
  • Jan  – Housing Crisis Workshop (City Council Housing Com.)
  • Feb – Kickoff Year of Housing Conference (ULI)
  • Apr – Cities for the Future (CityAge)
  • Jun – Context Vol 4 – Neighborhoods 2027 (SDAF)
  • Jun – Pacific Coast Builders Conference (PCBC)
  • Jul  – Public Health, Senior Housing and Homeless Shelter (AIASD/St. Paul’s Plaza)
  • Aug – Transit Centered Development Growth, Mobility & Policies (AIASD/Circulate San Diego)
  • Sep – Impediments to Housing Affordability (AIASD/HYM)
  • Nov – Housing the Next 1 Million Charrette (AIASD+Teams)
  • Nov – Townhall Meetings (City + HYM + Universities)

 

In the spirit of the principal mission, duty, and obligation of the American Institute of Architects to be of ever-increasing service to society and promote excellence in the built environment, the AIA San Diego and AIA Palomar Chapters have proposed an event to take place on November 4-5 titled “Housing the Next 1 Million in San Diego County – An Exploration of Housing Growth through Visualizations of Population Distribution, City of New Villages, and Lean Housing as a Regional Urban Design Charrette. The intent is to elevate the discussion and strategize how to prioritize and develop a set of solutions and templates to address this housing challenge and its impact on our future.  Leading 12 geographically set teams, Architect’s will explore, analyze, and demonstrate, together with other multi-disciplinary volunteers, using analysis, programming, design and planning studies. Specifically, San Diego County needs to prepare for the natural demographic growth that SANDAG has calculated, so by 2050, the County will need to be prepared to accommodate another million people.  Realize that most of those will be born here.  This growth translates to the need for 400,000 more housing units to be built in the county by 2050.


The Year of Housing – Solutions to Meet San Diego’s Housing Challenge
By Philip J. Bona, AIA

Known as America’s Finest City, San Diego California is the 8th largest city in the United States by population. In 2015, its Association of Governments (SANDAG) completed the “San Diego Forward: Regional Plan” that forecast 1 million more citizens in the County by 2050. Only 50% of this growth will be from immigration into California, while the other 50% will be natural demographic increase from current inhabitants. This demand translates to 330,000 additional housing units that will require construction of at least 10,000 units per year countywide. Less than half that was built in 2016 and trended similarly in the past decade.

A broad San Diego coalition called Housing You Matters was started last year by the Building Industry Association, Habitat for Humanity, the Urban Land Institute, the Association of Realtors, the San Diego Architectural Foundation, and the American Institute of Architects (AIA|SD), among others to take on the task of finding solutions. The group prepared an agenda for 2017 to address the severe housing shortage, promote a wider range of housing prices, and create a discourse on regulatory reform with the City. Branded as the Year of Housing for the region, a robust calendar of conferences and activities has been developed to engage and inform citizenry and the marketplace and also promote a new generation of “Yimby’s” (Yes in my back yard). Conferences are hosted by San Diego’s City Council, Citizens for Century-3, the ULI, San Diego Architectural Foundation, Housing You Matters, and the AIA|SD, as well as CityAge (a National Housing Conference) on April 25/26th.

With 90% of San Diego’s available land zoned residential and already occupied, most of the remaining 10% are unbuildable sites. Because of this constrained housing inventory, rent and sale prices continue to escalate to what the market will bear and more. Based on inflationary home prices between 1995 and 2015, the projected median price of a home in 2050 is expected to be $1.6 million. This rising cost of housing in San Diego is not sustainable, and left to the marketplace for the next 33 years, along with slower acceleration of personal income, our grand-children and great-grandchildren face certain hardship.

Using the successful Regional Urban Design Charrette model for “Housing the Next Million in the Silicon Valley” led by AIA San Mateo County in the year 2000, AIA|SD will lead the same effort for San Diego County in 2017. In March, interdisciplinary teams, made up of volunteer architects, planners, landscape architects, engineers, builders, universities, community representatives, developers, city agencies, community banks, realtors and others, will come together monthly to study regional and local solutions for a leaner housing industry and more resilient land use. In November, the teams will meet for a 2-day Charrette to target 12 transit growth areas identified by SANDAG. The goal is to dream and employ best practices in planning, design and visualizations that demonstrates solutions to how the County could absorb 330,000 additional housing units in a smart, healthy, sustainable, mobile, and resilient way for the region.

Philip Bona is 2017 President of the San Diego Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, a member of the AIA National Strategic Council, and a practicing architect & planner with BNIM | 2011 AIA National Architecture Firm Award.

Questions?
Contact Phil at pbona@bnim.com or 650-207-9092.

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  1. R.O.O.F. Meeting

    October 18 @ 11:45 am