In one of her first actions as mayor, Karen Bass signed an executive directive that allows 100% affordable housing developments to be fast-tracked and super-sized. A little over a year later, that program, known as ED1, appears to be succeeding well beyond anyone’s expectations.
Ben Christopher of Calmatters has the scoop. Since December 2022, more than 16,000 units of deed-restricted affordable housing have been proposed through ED1. As many as three quarters of those homes will be built without any public subsidy. Profit-seeking private developers are choosing to build income-restricted projects — sometimes in lieu of already approved market-rate projects — because of the dramatic time savings and density increases they can unlock using this law.
It’s still early days, but these initial results are very promising. LA managed to roughly triple its pipeline of affordable housing — approving more units through this program in the last 13 months than all affordable housing approved in previous three years combined — without dedicating any additional subsidy. It did so by treating affordable housing as the emergency that it is, casting aside building codes and permitting processes that work against the city’s housing needs.