Major Changes to Single-Family Housing – CA Law and SF Planning

State and local changes in land-use law make sweeping changes to single family zoning and to our ability to review projects NOW. Even bigger changes are being proposed.

Two bills (SB 9 and SB 10) passed by the State allow multi-unit development in neighborhoods like Dolores Heights. With the passage of SB 9, single-family lots will allow a duplex, or to be subdivided into two lots, or both. So a current single-family lot in San Francisco could build up to 4 units (plus allowed Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs.) SB 10 lets the City rezone most lots to allow as many as 10 units.

On top of this, Supervisor Mandelman has introduced an ordinance that would allow up to four units (plus allowed ADUs) on any residential lot in San Francisco.

The Planning Department is building on these major changes. At a Planning Commission hearing on Thursday, November 18, the Department will recommend expanding both the State laws and the proposed Mandeman ordinances. DHIC is still evaluating these proposed changes. However, we understand that the Department’s recommendations would rezone all RH-1 lots to RH-2, allow four units in all residential lots and six units on corner lots (plus allowed ADUs in both cases.) For proposed four-unit projects, no public notice or review will be required. That means, neighbors will neither receive a City notice that a four-unit building is proposed near them, nor can they request a review. We are still evaluating the impacts of the Department’s proposals, to ensure they do not affect the DH Special Use District.

Powerful currents of change across the country are affecting housing policy. These changes are hitting San Francisco and Dolores Heights. DHIC continues to monitor and to influence local impacts. Stay tuned for a “call-to-action” for emails or public comment to our Supervisor and/or Planning Commissioners. For more information, email

This entry was posted in Newsletter and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.