February 2, 2024 12:25 PM
SANTA MONICA, Calif. (Feb. 2, 2024) — Gov. Gavin Newsom this week designated Santa Monica as a Prohousing community, recognizing the city’s strong commitment to developing affordable housing and opening the door for added funding opportunities to help the city continue this work.
Santa Monica joins 37 other jurisdictions across the state that have received the Prohousing Designation for demonstrated success in breaking down barriers to housing production.
“We need to aggressively build more housing to support Californians,” Newsom said in a Jan. 31 press release. “Prohousing cities move to the front of the line when it comes to incentives, funding and other state resources. It’s critical for more communities to join in this distinction and build their fair share of housing.”
Local governments with the Prohousing Designation can apply for funding through the $9.5 million Prohousing Incentive Program and also receive priority when applying for several other funding programs.
Santa Monica cleared the way for added housing production at all income levels with the City Council adoption of the 6th Cycle Housing Element Update, with the first phase of implementation adopted in spring 2023.
The updates brought the city into compliance with new state housing regulations, and also:
- Created a streamlined administrative approval process and more efficient timelines for housing projects.
- Committed city-owned property for the development of affordable housing. Updated zoning development standards and removed barriers to support housing production across the city.
- Allowed new housing to be developed in non-residential zones where housing was previously not permitted.
- Provided opportunities for housing production on residentially zoned surface parking lots and community assembly sites to minimize displacement.
- Encouraged development of moderate-income housing citywide.
These actions support the city’s strategic priorities of Justice, Equity & Diversity; Economic Growth & Cultural Vitality; and Addressing Homelessness.
“Housing is a key piece of our work to foster a diverse community through equitable access to housing, regardless of someone’s income level. And it’s particularly important to our economic recovery and in our efforts to prevent and address homelessness,” City Manager David White said. “The city has successfully aligned with the state housing laws thereby removing ‘red tape’ for those that want to invest in Santa Monica.”
Santa Monica has made significant progress toward meeting the city’s housing needs in just the first few years of this Housing Element cycle. There are more than 5,800 housing units approved, pending, or under construction in the city, about 20 percent of which are targeted for moderate, low and very low income residents.
For more information on the city’s housing progress and approved housing projects, visit santamonica.gov/planning-resources.
Public Information Officer