Pismo Beach planning to help fund low-cost rental units

September 16, 2019


The city of Pismo Beach is considering providing funding to Peoples’ Self-Help Housing for a proposed 40-unit apartment complex the nonprofit plans to build.

Pismo Beach currently has $3.5 million in housing in-lieu fee funds, according to a city staff report. Multiple developers have inquired about obtaining the housing funds and staffers now recommend that some of the funds go to the rental project.

Located on the edge of the city near the Pismo Beach outlets center, the nonprofit is currently in escrow on 885 4th Street. Project plans call for construction of approximately 40 units with parking and amenities.

On Tuesday, staff will recommend the Pismo Beach City Council authorize the city manager to work on an agreement with Peoples’ Self-Help Housing. It is unclear how much funding the nonprofit may be in line to receive.

The project site is well suited for affordable housing because it is close to shopping and public transit, and the development would not block coastal access or views, according to the staff report.

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The location, 855 4th St, Pismo Beach, has me concerned. 855 is on the downhill side of the 4th street slope as it runs to the freeway (overlooking the Pismo Lake preserve). This would seem to indicate that there will be an entrance on this section of the street.

I’m kind of curious where are they finding the land for these projects. The town seems pretty much build out.

Build a new pier with a platform large enough to accommodate Pismo’s California required low income housing? Surely the California Coastal Commission will have no choice but to do diligence in providing their share of benefit for a low income housing projects too.

“Multiple developers have inquired about obtaining the housing funds”. I bet! Vet all the players, follow the money and get fixed price bids. Don’t let the funds be “wasted”. And Reality Check makes a good point.

Here’s hoping that these proposed 40 units will be larger square footage than the ones People’s Self Help Housing” built in Pismo Beach a few years ago. Those units are so tiny, but allow for larger families by allowing little “lofts” at stair well turns to be called “bedrooms”.

Yes, there is a balance between getting more housing units into the space versus the amount of square feet in each unit. The smaller the unit size, the more probability of it being a future slum.

Affordable housing is much needed, so I do support the concept as long as each unit has sufficient space for “real” bedrooms rather than tiny spaces pretending to be bedrooms.