SLO Planning Commission supports five-story affordable housing project

November 18, 2022


The San Luis Obispo Planning Commission on Wednesday voted to give preliminary approval for a large affordable housing development on Monterey Street that will include two five-story mixed-use buildings.

Plans call for the Housing Authority of San Luis Obispo (HASLO) to build a 106-unit development spread across two five-story buildings and two two-story triplexes on Monterey Street between California Boulevard and Pepper Street. The project consists of 105 residential units for low-income residents, 56 of which would be for senior households.

The plans call for one unit for the manager’s quarters. Likewise, the development would contain 4,336 square feet of commercial space, as well as a three-story parking garage.

Due to the project’s affordable housing designation, HASLO is in line to receive approval for constructing a 54-foot-tall building in an area normally restricted to 45-foot structures. The planning commission also approved reductions in parking and setback requirements for the project.

Part of the development would replace the building that currently houses Central Coast Brewing. George Peterson, the owner of Central Coast Brewing, is moving his business to a new development named The Hub, which is situated nearby on Monterey Street close to Grand Avenue. Peterson previously said he initiated the creation of The Hub due to his brewery being kicked out of its current location.

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The structures across the street are scaled incorrectly. They are dishonestly oversized to make this project look daintier, dishonest representation.

I think you’re right! Re-examining the artwork definitely shows the “development” has been reduced in size! Typical of government/developers to mislead the voters.

I can’t fathom the negativity in this comment section.

Currently there is nothing but empty lots there and one brewery which will be moving 2 blocks away to a better location – when someone says it’s destroying a neighborhood it’s actually creating a new one where there is currently sad looking vacant lots. The new commercial space will be valuable and will enhance the entire area since it brings new residents to the area and creates more reason to engage in foot traffic – if I’m picking up some soup at Splash Cafe or doing a trip to the Oriental Market, I might as well walk to these new spaces – something no one does now since it’s empty! Now thats not charming.

It’s design aesthetic is admittedly a bit standard, but I think it looks nice, very SLO colors and lots of windows to provide residents natural light. Again new commercial space and new housing is an incredible increase to the areas value. Also this project is what this town needs more of if we are going to make this town affordable to live in. This project provides sorely needed housing for seniors and low income locals. And even if those prices end up being higher than we’d like, they’ll contribute to improving the towns overall housing market. If they’re 1000 a month, someone currently in 800 a month housing might mover there, creating an open space for cheaper housing for someone who needs it. This is how free markets work, I can’t believe people here would rather have restrictive government intervention.

It’s also flabbergasting that you assume there are no plans for water (we have it and can always conserve more), traffic (this type of housing will be filled by a lot of people who work service downtown, trips via walking or biking, and seniors who don’t drive too often), noise (there aren’t other residental areas for blocks) and trees! Come on! Do we as a community value some old trees, the noise of senior citizens and a few extra cars on the road more than PEOPLE HAVING SOMEWHERE TO LIVE!

This really will improve our town and help locals – revitalizing empty lots into new business space along a walkable corridor near downtown, and creating new affordable housing for a town that is increasingly unaffordable to live for anyone not rich already. Housing for seniors who want to stay in the town they grew up in, and housing for blue collar workers and services workers who are foundational to the local economy. The objections are petty and don’t offer solutions besides saying not in my backyard.

While you dislike this post, consider replying and helping my poor soul see why more housing and the free market is a bad thing.

All the people who would move into this development are obviously living somewhere right now. Few if any people who are currently homeless are not going to be moving into this development. The argument that people need

someplace to live is nonsense. This will simple allow people who do not live in the city now, to move in. It’s part of a drive to increase population density in the city which is then used as an excuse to raise taxes

for “services”.

A few people get richer. The general public pay the price in reduced standard of living.

Increasing population density is never a good thing.

What you’re saying is that people who aren’t rich shouldn’t live in San Luis Obispo, but should live in Santa Maria and commute an hour to SLO. That quality of life is only for people who already live in SLO, not people who want to live here but can’t.

Population density solves so many of our problems – less traffic because people can walk and bike to their jobs and daily needs, more population to support small businesses, less need for parking and roads which take up an extreme park of our urban landscape compared to countries in Europe, Japan, or even the United States before the 1950s (which had a public transportation system that was the envy of the world). The experiment of strict government regulation prohibiting mixed use housing, enforced maximum density, minimum lot size, and nonsense standards which prefer trees and complaints over people and matkets, has failed.

Hey, I’d love to live in Carmel but I cannot afford to. So maybe the City leaders there should deteriorate the quality of life for existing Carmel residents so an old retired guy can afford to live there?

1) Who needs more commercial? Vacant spaces are everywhere. The Governor just signed a bill to allow easier conversion of commercial property to residential because we are over retailed. It is difficult to maintain commercial properties if there are too many vacancies.

2) The project looks institutional, very institutional.

3) If SLO builds like this, it will damage it’s desirability as a vacation destination. Look at Carmel-by-the-Sea or Solvang or Santa Barbara or the Apple Farm properties, people travel to locales with attractive architecture. It part of being a vacation destination. If I owned one of the nearby lodging facilities to this project, I would be screaming.

4) Low income housing, fine, but this project is awful. If the developers’ overpaid, tough luck.

I could not agree with you more,

Just what the town needs, more stucco boxes (like the development on Foothill/Broad), piled high on each other.

And what about the water? I keep hearing from City staff and elected folks that SLO is in good shape. I just don’t believe it.

Most people don’t know that HASLO considers lower income to be 45,000-50,000 a year. This does not qualify a minimum wage earner for housing. My son is on SSI Disability I discovered all this housing is a joke because there is nothing out there for someone only making 12-15,000 a year. I was shocked as most of this housing cost are pretty much what the market price for any unit. The only difference is it’s new. Very sad!!!

Well, there goes the neighborhood…

Four massive boxy lumps …Who needs the additional commercial space? There are vacant spaces everywhere. Internet shopping has been killing retail for years.

If the city allows this type of junk, it is going to diminish overall property values as the town loses it’s charm for tacky conventional institution like design.

Lower revenues for nearby lodging facilities as lodgers choose more charming locales.

Back to the drawing board on this one.

Yuckers, Very ugly buildings.

And the upside for the average citizen is….?

Once again…where’s the water coming from? How will the additional sewage effect the existing treatment plant? Traffic is bad enough before and after the high school lets out, what plans are made for better traffic safety? What is meant by affordable? $150 a month? $1000? $3000? Or is affordable to be in the “low $500,000’s”? Where does the parking structure let out, on Palm? On California? On Monterey? If on Palm, what noise and traffic suppression will be in place for current residents? Are the old Redwoods suddenly sick, and must be removed with zero plans for the good wood to be used elsewhere?

Or, are we seeing another “screw you SLO”, from the planning commission?

Yes, my issue(s) are water, traffic and boxy design, in that order.


Yup, more incentive to raise taxes to support that 3 percent at 50 pension.

This will really help to improve our town for the local residents, NOT