According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the City of Oakland currently has 1,000 housing units under construction with more than 11,000 in the planning phase but is not on pace to reach it’s goal of 51,000 new unites by 2040 to accmomodate the projected growth in both jobs and population.
Planners at the Association of Bay Area Governments report that most of the new construction is centered around downtown, Uptown, West Oakland and the waterfront. ABAG reports that the City Council recently changed zoning near the Lake Merritt BART Station to bring in an additional 3,500 units.
The problem, in Oakland. San Francisco and elsewhere, is basically a lack of space, long waits for permits and difficult environmental regulations that often delay big projects and add to the costs. Moreover, residential developers must compete with commercial projects, which usually bring in more tax revenue for cities and often get faster approval.