Sorry, Progressives – Supply Matters

Yeah. Very clearly: supply matters. What’s insane though, is that zoning and development regulations require a complete rewrite to scale-up. What would be nice is something that automatically allows for reuse/upzoning in particular districts if the pressure is high. I.e. a “rachet-up” given particular conditions or even a general legislation that allows for +0.25 FAR or +5 DU/acre per decade in particular zoning districts given that densification is a much needed real policy in most of LA/SF.

Let's Go LA

The discussion on housing affordability in California has taken a turn for the bizarre lately. In response to calls for allowing increased construction of new market rate housing, some progressives have argued that supply and demand doesn’t apply to urban housing. This has often been implied in the past, but recently, it has been stated explicitly and there have been ludicrous claims, such as that developers don’t want to build anything other than luxury units and that all new supply will just be purchased by the “global elite” anyway.

I’m not sure why some folks feel the need to insist that supply is irrelevant. Maybe progressives instinctively don’t trust private developers or economists. Whatever the reason, it’s just wrong. First, it’s obvious that developers will build cheaper units if they can make money doing so. This is true from the Inland Empire, where you can find new suburban housing for…

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