Measure M was defeated by 62 percent of the voters, but it’s being revived by the new City Council. On hold due to threatened legality, they may yet act based on faulty analysis of high rents.
“Generation Priced Out,” by Randy Shaw of the progressive Tenderloin Housing Clinic, investigates high rents. He finds: The statewide housing crisis is the result of a lack of new housing due to decisions made by cities since 1970s to keep renters out. Well-meaning, politically progressive people passed “neighborhood preservation ordinances,” set 30-foot height limits, and aggressively pushed zoning laws.
Shaw claims the banning of apartments was ironic because elitist, in some cases racist, exclusionary land-use policies effectively shut out lower-income people. Rent control is not the answer — it will not increase the housing supply or lower rents. We need more affordable multi-unit buildings to increase the housing supply and bring competition to the rental market.