March 16, 2023
Matt Renda

California state officials will hold a public hearing Thursday to gather feedback from residents of Marin County about the state’s plans to construct a large affordable housing complex on property next to the San Quentin State Prison.

If approved, the Oak Hill Apartments will consist of 250 units of 100% affordable housing on an 8.5-acre parcel that once functioned as a gun range, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

The project was one of several included in an executive order issued by Gov. Gavin Newsom in January 2019 that required state officials search for state-owned property conducive to the construction of affordable housing projects.

Due to the state’s ownership of the parcel, it will take the lead on securing environmental permits, and Marin County will not have jurisdiction to approve or deny the project.

More than half of the housing will be built by Education Housing Partners and will be dedicated to providing low-income housing to teachers. Marin County suffers from a deficit of teachers that officials at least partially attribute to the dearth of affordable places to live. The proposed developer for the other units is Eden Housing. Units for teachers and county employees would be offered for residents at 60% to 120% of area median income, and low-income family units will be held for families making 30% to 60% of AMI.

The plans for the housing complex include terraced buildings on the sloping parcel that afford views of the San Francisco Bay. The San Quentin State Prison houses more than 3,000 prisoners.

Some residents have expressed concern about increased traffic in the area, but preliminary environmental analysis indicated traffic would not be a great concern.

The meeting comes as the Newsom administration continues to put pressure on jurisdictions to build more housing to address the large discrepancy between supply and demand that many analysts blame for the housing affordability crisis.

Another affordable housing project geared toward teachers was proposed last week in Cupertino on a parcel owned by Apple.

Read the full article.