Fix Palo Alto's Housing Crisis!

Please join eight former Mayors and over 1000 community members in asking City Council to exercise leadership and address Palo Alto's housing shortage now!


1,500 signatures

The cost of living in Palo Alto has skyrocketed. As a result, we are seeing long-time neighbors move because they can no longer afford the rent. It is not unusual for Palo Alto workers to commute in from areas as far as Stockton, Gilroy, and Tracy, putting severe strain on our roads and our climate. We are on the path to being a city composed only of long-time landowners and wealthy newcomers.

This situation is the result of city policies that have discouraged new housing while encouraging more office space. As a result, Palo Alto has the nation’s highest median rent and the region’s highest jobs-to-housing ratio. City Council has taken measures to address the jobs side of the equation by limiting office growth. Now, it is time to address the housing side of the equation.

A true fix will require a long-term focus and deep commitment; we believe, though, that we can maintain the character of our community while making changes to alleviate this imbalance. Council can show leadership by crafting policy to achieve the following goals:

1. Encourage construction of more studio apartments and other naturally affordable smaller units. 

2. Encourage buildings composed of apartments and condos over ground-floor retail. Current policy requires developers to build office space into any new four-story building in a commercial district.

3. Make it easier for homeowners to build second units on their property, especially to accommodate multiple-generation households and caretakers.

4. Allow car-light and car-free housing in walkable, transit-accessible areas for residents who are able to not own a car.

5. Facilitate the development of new senior housing, including alternative models such as co-housing, home sharing, and mixed-use senior communities with retail and services.

We ask the City Council to plan for more housing so that Palo Alto can be the community of opportunity it has historically been: a family-friendly city that welcomed interesting thinkers and doers of all ages and all incomes.  Many of the above ideas were implemented successfully in Palo Alto’s South of Forest (SOFA) plan.  We know that this can be done!

To find out more see our blog post.

Will you sign?

  • Andrew Stein
    signed 2016-02-06 22:37:02 -0800
  • Charles Piercey
    signed 2016-02-06 22:23:53 -0800
  • Meseret Samuei
    signed 2016-02-06 17:10:55 -0800
  • Mila Zelkha
    signed 2016-02-06 17:07:22 -0800
  • Elena Kapbasova
    signed 2016-02-06 17:06:36 -0800
  • Ana Maria Santa Gadea
    signed 2016-02-06 17:05:46 -0800
  • Felix Rogge
    signed 2016-02-06 17:04:01 -0800
  • Lou Meehan
    signed 2016-02-06 17:03:16 -0800
  • Dennis Mandudzo
    signed 2016-02-06 17:02:36 -0800
  • Andrea Orji
    signed 2016-02-06 17:01:37 -0800
  • Danielle Madrigal
    signed 2016-02-06 17:00:01 -0800
  • Isabella Tuazon
    signed 2016-02-06 16:59:17 -0800
  • Dacia Martinez
    signed 2016-02-06 16:58:20 -0800
  • Rahsan Karnan
    signed 2016-02-06 16:57:36 -0800
  • Nisar Shaikh
    signed 2016-02-06 16:56:44 -0800
  • Laura Santora
    posted about this on Facebook 2016-02-05 20:55:37 -0800
    Join with me to support more housing and transportation options in Palo Alto!
  • Daniel Asmat
    signed 2016-02-05 16:32:53 -0800
  • Bonnie Stein
    signed 2016-02-05 15:57:41 -0800
    Need to expand square footage in backyard cottages…900 feet is

    too small for a family.
  • Walt Hays
    signed 2016-02-05 07:33:35 -0800
  • Gaspard van Koningsveld
    signed 2016-02-05 00:31:18 -0800
  • Sarit Schube
    signed 2016-02-04 22:31:46 -0800
  • Jennifer DiBrienza
    signed 2016-02-04 22:28:30 -0800
  • Jeanette Brosnan
    signed via 2016-02-04 21:24:44 -0800
  • John Shoolery
    signed via 2016-02-04 20:52:54 -0800
  • Aleksandar Totic
    signed 2016-02-04 20:09:56 -0800
    I’d love to see a plan to bring jobs and housing into balance. 1:1 ratio would be a great start.
  • Peter Eckart
    signed 2016-02-04 19:42:52 -0800
  • Susanna Bahrami
    signed via 2016-02-04 19:20:04 -0800
  • Adrienne Germain
    signed via 2016-02-04 19:03:08 -0800
  • Marisa Reyes
    signed via 2016-02-04 18:57:18 -0800
  • Kerri Kitchel
    signed via 2016-02-04 18:42:29 -0800


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