Preserving Rent-Controlled Units: Acheson Commons Might become Dangerous Precedent

Acheson Commons

City Council has sent back the Acheson Commons plan to the Zoning Adjustments Board. The 200+ unit development at Shattuck and University has united labor, environmentalists and affordable housing advocates, according to the article below.

One of the big problems with the current plan is that 8 rent controlled units will be eliminated, but NOT REPLACED with below-market rentals — I say this means the Zoning Board isn’t following the current Demo Ordinance, but City staff are saying all EMPTY UNITS ARE NOT RENT CONTROLLED and not protected from destruction.

*BMC23.080 Board shall approve a Use Permit to eliminate a controlled rental unit only when it finds that: *

*2. The replacement dwelling unit shall be available for occupancy to Households for Lower Income or Very Low Income Household*

BTU might be asking you to comment when this gets back to Zoning — but then again, it looks the developer is once again offering the rent controlled houses for sale, which would comply with a different part of the Demo Ordinance:
http://www.contracostatimes.com/contra-costa-times/ci_22903585/eye-east-bay-richmond-debuts-environmental-disasters-tour

More on the Council decision to remand:
http://www.berkeleyside.com/2013/03/27/acheson-commons-sent-back-to-berkeley-zoning-board/

Illustration by LSA Associates, Inc.
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