Housing

You want to live in Manhattan? Move there.

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I feel like I've been having this discussion for 30 years, and it still keeps coming back. The latest installment (thanks to sfist for the link) is a Slate article by Matthew Yglesias arguing that San Francisco could solve its housing crisis by becoming as dense as Manhattan. Lots of highrise condos and apartments in places like the Mission. Read more »

Class divisions in SF (sorta)

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Richard Florida, who got famous creating the "creative class," has a new series of maps out charting class structure in American cities -- not on the basis of income or wealth but on the type of work people do. Sfist has a nice copy of the San Francisco version here. It shows, on the surface, that this city has virtually no "working class," some "service class" and lots of "creative class."Read more »

Reagan's legacy: Homeless death

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The headline on sfgate is about as brutal as you can get: "The coming homeless die-off." But the brief story points to an alarming set of statistics: The median age of homeless people on the streets of US cities is now 53. The life expectancy for homeless people is 64. You get the point.

But here's the key political element:Read more »

No golden years for LGBT seniors

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According to studies, queer seniors are poorer than their straight counterparts. They’re half as likely to have health insurance, and two-thirds as likely to live alone. Not to mention facing discrimination in medical and social services, retirement homes, and nursing care facilities. So much for the “golden years.”
Here in San Francisco, LGBT seniors face another grave threat: evictions. Many of our elderly live in rent-controlled apartments that are targeted by real-estate speculators and investors out to make big bucks turning them into tenancies-in-common.

With median rents close to $3,000 a month and vacancy rates low, the odds are pretty good that an evicted senior won’t find an affordable place in the city. For a senior with AIDS, an eviction is especially threatening since our city offers the best treatment and services. Studies show that people with AIDS who lose their apartments tend to die sooner, especially if they become homeless. 

Read more »

The "mystery" of the homeless families

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The Chron's having a hard time figuring out why there are so many more homeless families looking for help.

"It's been difficult to pin down any kind of trend," said Elizabeth Ancker, assistant program director at the nonprofit Compass Connecting Point, the group that manages the waiting list and helped find Bailey a shelter room. "We're really just seeing more of everybody - every demographic, in every situation."

No shit.Read more »

On KPFA, Gavin Newsom ducks the tough ones

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Gavin Newsom sat down for an hour with Brian Edwards-Tiekert of KPFA's Up Front, and the show is remarkable. Brian was a little less harsh than Steven Colbert, who (properly) said the Gavster's new book, Citizenville, needs "a bullshit detector" and that "everything in there could be carved on a stone and put in someone's garden," but he did a great job putting Newsom's book in the context of state and lo Read more »

The 8 Washington shit show

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The latest problem with the 8 Washington condo project emerged March 12 when the Chron reported on a new study that shows construction of the most pricey condos in San Francisco history could threaten a major sewer line that serves a quarter of the city. Read more »

Poverty among plenty -- and it's getting worse

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Check out the news this week:

The Associate Press reports that there are increasing numbers of homeless and poor people in Silicon Valley. The piece almost sounds like something I would write:Read more »

SF approaches 1 million residents

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So the Association of Bay Area Governments, which plays an outsized role in local planning by making all sorts of projections, based on whatever economists and demographers use to make projections, that are supposed to guide how cities in the region make land-use decisions, says San Francisco should be prepared to see its population grow to 964,000 people by 2035.If you figure that's only an estimate, and probably off by at least five percent, we could be talking about a millio Read more »

Western SoMa Plan changed to lessen development impacts to nightlife and Muni

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The Western SoMa Community Plan had its first hearing before the Board of Supervisors Land Use and Economic Development Committee today, with dozens of speakers praising the eight-year citizen-based planning effort that developed it but with much of the testimony criticizing the plan's emphasis on facilitating housing development to the exclusion of other goals.Read more »