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On Thursday April 11, the California Department of General Services (DGS) released its initial inventory of vacant state-owned lands that are potentially available for the development of affordable housing.

This January, Governor Newsom signed Executive Order N-06-19 which directed DGS to create an inventory of all state-owned properties that are in excess of the State’s foreseeable needs and could be available for potential development to alleviate the state’s housing crisis.  The Excess Property plan further directed DGS, along with the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD), to create screening tools to identify and evaluate those sites where housing development is most likely to be economically feasible, and that are located in areas where low housing availability is increasing local housing costs.

Thursdays initial inventory release, which can be found here, used county assessor data to identify 44,370 state-owned parcels that were potentially suitable.  Of those parcels, 1,330 were flagged by DGS and HCD’s screening criteria as potentially viable sites for affordable housing development.

Next Steps

DGS is currently conducting further diligence on the identified properties and is expected to release a map overlay showing its conclusions on where affordable housing development would be most feasible and impactful by Summer 2019.  In September, DGS is expected to issue the first Request for Proposals (RFP) for developers of affordable housing to enter low-cost, long-term ground leases of an identified property from the priority map; two additional RFPs are expected within a year.

The governor also announced on Thursday that his administration has partnered with mayors in the hard-hit markets of San Francisco, San Diego, Sacramento, Oakland, Fresno, and Chico to examine parcels identified in their cities for expedited development.  The governor has invited other local jurisdictions to likewise partner with the state.