Over the past year, Permit Sonoma staff introduced a series of housing initiatives to reduce constraints and expand opportunities for housing development within the unincorporated County’s urban areas.
Phase 1 changed the zoning code to reduce constraints to housing development. These changes facilitate and encourage the development of accessory dwelling units, residential units in mixed-use projects, and single-room occupancy projects. Phase 2, a further set of code changes, was approved by the Board of Supervisors October 23, 2018, and included changes to the multi-family development standards including new ways of calculating density, a new Workforce Housing Combining Zone, provisions for cottage housing developments, and protections for rental housing.
Phase 3 will identify urban sites near jobs, services, and transit with adequate infrastructure for affordable housing, workforce housing, or higher-density housing. This effort will implement policies and programs in the 2014 Housing Element, and promote the city-centered growth policies of the General Plan. Permit Sonoma will conduct CEQA analysis for rezoning sites, and will complete the General Plan amendment and rezoning process for those sites for which it is feasible.