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Adopt Streamlined Standards for Multifamily Developments - YES

As many residents are aware, a slew of recent state laws has sharply reduced local communities' control over whether or not to approve many types of new multifamily housing developments. While these laws largely remove cities' ability to approve or deny developments, they do provide an important caveat: cities may (in fact, must) adopt a set of "objective design guidelines" that developers must follow, with the goal of letting communities continue exercise some say over the aesthetic feel and character of local buildings.

The creation of these streamlined design standards was a large undertaking that took more than a year of intensive work from our dedicated planning staff, who engaged the public and the Planning Commission repeatedly to ensure that Corte Madera's standards reflected how residents wanted the community to look and feel. The burden was eased by the fact that we shared this project (and the consultant team that helped us) with many other Marin cities, as well as the County itself.

Ultimately, the adoption of such standards was required by state law under threat of lawsuit, and while I have serious concerns about the way in which the state is going about addressing our housing crisis, at the very least, voting to keep Corte Madera taxpayers out of court is always an easy decision.


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