Legislative Updates: San Francisco

With the end of the Covid-19 Health Emergency on the horizon, San Francisco is seeing an influx of land use legislation as City leaders set their sights on post-pandemic recovery. Below are two recent proposals to watch as they make their way through the approval process. Small Business Recovery Act: Simplifying and Streamlining Small Business […]


To Sublease Or Not To Sublease?

With overall rental rates having fallen nearly 30% and vacancy rates risen roughly 150% between Q4 of 2019 and Q1 of 2021[1], the leasing of office space in San Francisco undisputedly remains a tenant’s market. Of the approximately 20.2 million square feet of available office space in San Francisco, nearly 45% is comprised of sublease […]

SB 35

Berkeley SB 35 Project Wins Appeal

Court of Appeal Rejects City’s Bases for Denying the Project After more than two years of legal wrangling in the courts, a 260-unit mixed-use project at 1900 Fourth Street in Berkeley (the Spenger’s parking lot) will soon be able to move forward under the streamlined approval process set forth in Senate Bill 35 (“SB 35”).  […]


Accessory Dwelling Units – Oakland Update

As previously reported, a slate of new California State laws became effective on January 1, 2020, that encourage the construction of Accessory Dwelling Units (“ADUs”). State law holds that until a city adopts an ordinance that complies with State law, a city’s existing ADU regulations are null and void and only State standards may be […]


Monument Referencing Before Construction

New construction and alteration projects that require a permit for public right of way work often spend a year or more working with San Francisco Public Works (“DPW”) towards an issued permit. It is only upon approval that a parallel group within DPW, the Preservation Monument Team, notifies permit applicants that they must reference all […]


Two Legislators Take Aim at Statewide Planning Laws

In an apparent backlash against recent housing bills, two California state legislators have introduced a constitutional amendment that would essentially revoke the state’s ability to regulate land use. If approved, this amendment would allow cities to avoid compliance with state laws aimed at increasing housing production, making it more difficult to meet the housing needs […]


Size Restrictions Proposed on San Francisco Homes

San Francisco policy-makers continue to scrutinize the size of dwellings in an attempt to manage affordability and housing stock.  Merits aside, policy-makers have expressed a consistent concern about demolitions, expansions, and new large-home construction.  The latest measure is an ordinance introduced last month by Supervisor Rafael Mandelman (District 8), whose district includes the Castro, Noe […]

Hostile Use of Another’s Property & Prescriptive Easements

A recent case provides further insight into what is considered “hostile” or “adverse” with respect to obtaining a prescriptive easement right.  A prescriptive easement is where one acquires a right to use another’s property, not by express agreement, but through the use of another’s property without permission.  More specifically, to establish a prescriptive easement, the […]


Cities’ Upcoming Need to Identify Housing Opportunity Sites

The next RHNA (Regional Housing Needs Assessment) cycle is quickly approaching, which means that all Bay Area cities will be taking a closer look at their Housing Elements and determining whether they have enough land zoned to accommodate more housing. In June 2020, the California Housing and Community Development (“HCD”) provided the Bay Area its […]

new law

New Law Limits Rental Restrictions in Condo Projects

A new law became effective on January1, 2021, that impacts common interest developments (“CIDs”) (including condo projects and planned developments) and homeowners associations (“HOAs”) in California.  Assembly Bill 3182 adds Civil Code Section 4741 to the Davis-Stirling Common Interest Development Act (“Davis-Stirling Act”), which is the primary body of law governing CIDs and HOAs in […]

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