Menlo Park Pledges Affordable Housing to Settle Lawsuit
- May 25, 2012
About 1,000 residential units will be built in Menlo Park to settle a lawsuit over the pace of affordable housing development in its borders. Three Bay Area nonprofit groups took the city to court in order to ban the city from issuing zoning changes or building permits unrelated to affordable housing.
Peninsula Interfaith Action, Urban Habitat Program and Youth United for Community Action sued the city over its Housing Element, a state-mandated planning document that requires local authorities to facilitate the development of homes available to residents of all income levels, according to MercuryNews.com. As a result of the settlement, Menlo Park will move ahead with rezoning and create incentives for developing the affordable units.
Menlo Park adopted its last Housing Element in 1992. Seven-year upgrades for 1999-2007 and 2007-2014 remain incomplete. MercuryNews.com noted that Peninsula the issue came to the fore when Facebook announced intentions to raise its employee count from 2,000 to 9,600 people. The settlement gives the city until March 2013 to update the document.