Housing Acceleration Program

More affordable homes are critical to creating a prosperous, equitable, and sustainable region for all San Diegans. That’s why SANDAG established the Housing Acceleration Program (HAP) to prioritize planning activities that accelerate housing production. The HAP Strategy outlines goals, policies, and actions to guide SANDAG’s role as a housing leader and the development of HAP initiatives. 

How will we accomplish this? With the help of the Regional Early Action Planning Grants of 2019 and 2021, REAP 1.0 and 2.0, respectively. SANDAG received $6.8 million through REAP 1.0 and is set to receive $43 million through REAP 2.0. Using these funds, the HAP will support jurisdictions, developers, and transit agencies to develop and adopt policies that will help accelerate housing production for all, prioritize infill development, and reduce vehicle miles traveled (VMT).  

The three core strategies of the HAP include

  • Local Jurisdiction Support:  Equip member agencies with the resources and capacity to implement pro-housing best practices
  • Data Analysis and Policy Resources: Compiles data, policy tools, resources, and best practices for local jurisdictions, stakeholders and communities. 
  • Regional Initiatives: Provides education, leadership and funding opportunities to accelerate housing investments.  

Regional Initiatives Underway 

SANDAG is increasing affordable housing, preventing displacement, providing educational resources and technical assistance, and delivering financial resources to local jurisdictions through several regional initiatives: 

Pro-Housing Best Practices

The SANDAG Pro-Housing Best Practices identifies 17 core functions that outline SANDAG’s role in fostering regional collaboration and as regional Pro-Housing leader. The Pro-Housing Best Practices provides context for how SANDAG could remove barrier to housing development, advance equity, and improve housing finance mechanisms.

Capital Mapping

Capital Mapping for the San Diego Region identifies public, private, and philanthropic funding opportunities to attain regional housing targets and accelerate housing production. Capital Mapping provides a strategic outline for how SANDAG could support regional partners and build coalitions to support housing development.

Funding Opportunities

SANDAG is providing grant opportunities through the Housing Acceleration Program Grant and will continue to look for ways to leverage funding from the State of California to provide more housing in the region and meet the goals of the Regional Plan.

Housing Acceleration Program Strategy

The Housing Acceleration Program Strategy focuses on the 5 P’s Housing Framework: Promoting Equity and Sustainability, Preserving Vulnerable Housing, Protecting Tenants, Preventing Displacement, and Producing Housing for All.

Regionwide Anti-displacement Strategies

The Anti-Displacement Strategy focuses on near-term action to accelerate affordable and equitable housing production in the San Diego region. The strategy will include an assessment of existing conditions, research about best practices, and an anti-displacement toolkit. The project started in September 2022 and is estimated to be completed by January 2024. 

 SANDAG is partnering with LeSar Developing Consultants, Urban Displacement Project, and Global Policy Leadership Academy to develop the strategy. More information can be found in Appendix B of the 2021 Regional Plan.

The strategy will accomplish the following: 

  • Use quantitative and qualitative data to understand where and to what extent residential displacement is occurring. 
  • Identify which of these areas facing residential displacement are targeted for infrastructure investment as part of the 2021 Regional Plan and provide SANDAG with insight to craft policies that will help prevent displacement. 
  • Equip jurisdictions with data and solutions-oriented tools to further develop and adopt anti-displacement policies. 
  • Engage with key stakeholders to learn about local displacement pressures, vet the validity of materials created as part of this study and empower communities with knowledge and strategies to advocate for implementation of anti-displacement policies.

Local Jurisdiction Technical Assistance Program

Technical assistance resources developed through this program will support local jurisdictions as they implement their 6th Cycle housing elements, prepare for and implement new housing legislation, and promote strategies to streamline CEQA and permitting processes for local housing development. 

Housing Policy and Planning Tool

This initiative will include the development of housing data packages, compiling of development case studies and the creation of an online, interactive regional housing policy and planning tool that provides a ‘one-stop' shop where data, resources, and technical assistance are readily available to local jurisdictions and stakeholders

Sustainable Communities On-call

Consultant services provided through pre-selected firms with expertise in a variety of planning disciplines in the field(s) of land use, housing, community development finance, equity, and more. The cities and County may utilize the on-call to procure consultant services, allowing for expediated use of HAP grant funds without having to undergo their own competitive procurement process or rate negotiations.

Educational Outreach

Educational outreach to raise awareness of the need for affordable housing and its community benefits. Resources will include a toolkit that supports local jurisdictions and attract potential developers.

Regional Equitable Housing Subcommittee

The SANDAG Board of Directors approved the creation of a Regional Equitable Housing Subcommittee (REHS). The subcommittee is intended to lead discussions and identify voluntary, innovative, and incentive-based housing approaches that address housing needs throughout the San Diego region.

Sustainable Communities Working Group (SCWG)

The Sustainable Communities Working Group (SCWG) composed of planning and community development directors from across the region provide input on HAP activities. The Regional Planning Committee (RPC) composed of elected officials from each subregion receive input from the SCWG and make policy recommendations to the SANDAG Board of Directors.