Housing Element Update

Doing Our Part to Respond to California's Housing Crisis

The evidence of a housing crisis is stark: California’s median home price of over $600,000 is the highest of any state in the nation, a significant number of renters pay more than 50 percent of their income on housing, and the number of homeless on the streets in our region has risen significantly in the last few years.

The principal way that local governments are tasked with helping address this statewide problem is through planning and zoning. The guiding document for this work in Elk Grove is the Housing Element of the General Plan, and ours is due for an update. The Housing Element update process is a formal proceeding that combines the need to meet technical requirements of State law with vigorous public participation that resembles town hall gatherings. To meet increasingly stringent State requirements, Elk Grove is going to need to plan for more high-density projects than have been our tradition. But how and where we plan for those projects is up to us as a community to decide.

Upcoming Public Hearings

The City Council will review of the draft Housing Element on May 12, 2021.  The meeting agenda and staff report on available on this website.  

Draft Housing Plan

In February 2021, the City released the public draft Housing Element. Based upon the comments received, and in consultation with the State Department of Housing and Community Development, revisions have been prepared.  

The City has also released the accompanying Supplemental Environmental Impact Report for the Housing Element. More information is available on the website.

Housing Sites

One of the roles of the Housing Element is to identify sites that may be developed with housing for a variety of household incomes. The housing need is defined through the Regional Housing Needs Allocation, or RHNA.

The City currently has an adequate number of zoned residential sites to meet RHNA requirements for the moderate and above moderate income groups.

The City has identified 43 possible housing sites (18 existing sites and 25 new candidate sites) located within City limits that could accommodate housing to meet the RHNA very low and low income groups. The City Council will select sites from this list of existing and candidate sites to be designated as meeting the RHNA requirement for low and very-low income units. All of the 43 sites, or some combination of the 43 sites, would be approved to accommodate RHNA. Those sites chosen from the candidate list would be subject to a General Plan Amendment and/or rezoning, as necessary, to meet the density obligations to qualify for listing in the RHNA. Additionally, the City is considering rezonings to some existing sites to increase the minimum density required on the site in order to increase the potential yield of these sites and reduce the overall number of sites that are listed in the RHNA.

The Draft Housing Element lists all 43 sites, and more details about them are provided below. A recommendation on which sites to include in the final plan will be made in April 2021 during the Planning Commission and City Council hearings. The final decision on sites will be made by the City Council.

Staff is currently reviewing the public feedback on the potential housing sites and will use this data in making a recommendation to the Planning Commission and City Council in April and May 2021. You can find out more about the sites below.

How were the sites in the tool selected?

Staff spent time looking at properties all around the City that were vacant or had minimal improvements (e.g., one house on five acres). Other factors including access to transit, access to services (e.g., grocery stores, schools), and surrounding conditions or prior planning were also considered.

Where are the existing and candidate sites?

The tool above includes maps illustrating the locations of the existing and candidate sites. This map is similar and includes locations of existing built multifamily housing. The map also shows the boundaries of the four City Council Districts.  An interactive version of the map is also available

How is the distribution of multifamily housing around the City being considered in the selection of sites?

City staff has heard concerns about the potential overconcentration of affordable housing in different areas of the City. While the final list of sites has not been selected, staff is looking at various data points, including the location of existing built multifamily housing (both market rate and income restricted) and existing sites designated for future multifamily development. These maps illustrate the distribution of multifamily sites around the City and are one way the City is considering this question.

What happens next?

Staff will review responses and create a recommendation for the City Council.  The Council will select the final list of sites that will be included in the housing plan.

Environmental Review

The Housing Element Update requires the preparation of the Environmental Impact Report. Learn more.

For More Information

The following are other materials or resources that provide background on the Housing Element.

City Town Halls on Housing

The City is hosting Town Halls on the Housing Element Update. Recordings of the meetings are available below.

July 2020 - Project Introduction

On July 27 and 29, the City hosted online town hall meetings discussing the 2021 Housing Element Update. During these live meetings, staff presented the same information, going over: 

  • What the Housing Element is and what it does State requirements for the Housing Element
  • How we plan for households of all income levels
  • Existing and candidate multifamily housing sites
After the presentation, staff were available to answer questions about the Housing Element Update.
October 2020 - Housing Policies
On October 7, 2020, the City hosted a town hall to discuss the housing policies. After the presentation, staff was available to answer questions. Watch the recording.
March 3, 2021 - Overview of the Draft Housing Element
On March 3, 2021, the City hosted a webinar to introduce the draft Housing Element. After the presentation, staff was available to answer questions. Watch the recording.


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