Vaca commission hears General Plan progress report – with housing emphasis – Fairfield Daily Republic

VACAVILLE — The Planning Commission heard an update Tuesday from Senior Planner Tyra Hays about the General Plan Progress Report, specifically as it relates to housing.

Government Code Section 65400 requires the city to issue an annual progress report and submit it to the Governor’s Office by April 1 each year. The Planning Commission offered input before it goes to the City Council next month.

The purpose of the report is to ensure active use of the General Plan, including the housing element; improve implementation of the documents; and set annual implementation priorities.

The city is also required to submit annually a Successor Agency report as an addendum to the Housing Element as it relates to its affordable housing activities. The city uses the annual General Plan Report to monitor citywide housing production.

Hays noted in her report the median household income for four people in the city is $99,300. Very low income is listed at $48,500, low at $77,600, moderate at $119,500 and above moderate at more than $119,500.

The median sales price in Vacaville on a home is currently $585,000. Hays said because of that, “the majority of households those are affordable to are those in the above moderate income.”

“Who is buying these homes?” Hays asked. “They are likely being purchased by people outside of the city.”

The median rate for rent in Vacaville is $2,729 per month.

“Our apartments are generally affordable to moderate income households,” Hays said.

According to the report, in 2021, housing applications were submitted for the Alamo Creek Subdivision (131 single-family units), Allison Apartments (135 multifamily units) and the McMurtry Estates (24 family units).

Residential permits were submitted to Brighton Landing, North Village, Vanden Estates, Farmstead, Parkside Green, Ashton Place and Harbison Townhouses.

Residential permits for affordable housing were issued to the Pony Express Senior Apartments with 27 very low income units, 33 low income units and 10 low income accessory dwelling units, along with 463 single-family units and 245 multifamily units.

A total of 790 residential permits were issued in 2021.

Rehabilitation projects purchased by the city include Lincoln Corner (134 units) and Vacaville Meadows (65 units).

The city tries to maintain a citywide housing mix of 75% single-family units and 25% multifamily. As of 2021, that split was 78% and 22%, respectively.

Commissioner Wendy Breckon voiced her concern for housing projects moving forward “eating up prime agricultural land.”

“We need a way to consider the cost of building homes on agricultural land and open space,” Breckon said.

Vice Chairman Brandon Kline and Chairman Robert Macauley both shared concerns of parking with many homes now featuring multifamily units. There was also concern for access roads, especially in light of the LNU Lightning Complex Fire.

“It’s a messed-up situation if you live here,” Kline said of the parking situation. “The problem is that the housing is getting bigger and closer together. We need to consider parking management strategies.”

Kline was also concerned with reaching all communities to “give them all a voice in the process.”

“We need to allow marginalized groups weigh in on their community,” he said.

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Matt Miller has been a journalist in Solano County for close to 30 years. Prior to coming to the Daily Republic in May of 2021, he was at The Reporter in Vacaville since 1990, serving as a Reporter, Assistant Sports Editor and Managing Editor. He also worked at newspapers in Truckee and Manteca. Contact him at 427-6995 or by email at [email protected]