big structure vs. small house

Photo by Adrian Scott Fine/L.A. Conservancy

News from the Los Angeles Conservancy:

Good news for California’s historic places! This week, Senate Bill 50 (SB 50) failed to pass a vote in the State Senate.

Thank you to everyone who emailed or called your representatives and expressed your concerns about this bill!

This controversial bill was intended to increase density and streamline the production of multi-family housing development in California. If passed, SB 50 would have overridden local land use restrictions, allowing multi-family buildings to go up near “high quality” train and bus stops.

While the intent of the bill – to provide more housing – was good, we were against the problematic approach. It posed a one-size-fits-all solution and a blunt, statewide fix that would outstrip local authority and planning, and directly harm historic places.

As part of a statewide coalition of preservation organizations, the Conservancy came out against the bill unless it was amended to include adequate preservation safeguards. Our thanks go out to the California Preservation Foundation for leading this effort.

In the coming months, we expect to see more legislation addressing housing development and density. Preservation and density are not mutually exclusive, or an either/or choice. We believe there can be a healthy balance with thoughtful planning. We will support future legislation if it reflects that balance, and speak out against it if it threatens the historic places that make Los Angeles unique.