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Posted on: October 12, 2022

2023-31 Housing Element Update

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Hillsborough's Housing Plan Approved by the State

The Town of Hillsborough received formal notice that the Town’s Housing Plan, formally known as the Housing Element, was approved by the State of California.

After more than two years of detailed planning efforts and substantial community participation, the State Department of Housing & Community Development (HCD) deemed the Town’s Housing Element document compliant with state housing laws. HCD thanked the Town’s team for the quality effort put into the housing plan. Hillsborough is one of few jurisdictions to earn this status, which is a credit to the volunteers from the community, specifically the Housing Element Advisory Committee (HEAC), and Town leadership in this process. At a December 20th Special Meeting, the City Council voted to certify the associated environmental document.

Hillsborough must plan for 554 units of housing for the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) Cycle 6, which runs from 2023-2031. The Town’s adopted plan was developed through numerous public meetings and workshops with residents, the HEAC, staff, consultants, and the City Council. The challenge was to satisfy the requirements of the State while maintaining the unique character of Hillsborough.

The main components of the plan consist of Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) and multi-unit housing on town-owned land. No rezoning of private property is needed to fulfill the plan.

The elements of the plan are:

  • 400 ADUs (as of December 31, 2023, 50 permits have been issued with an additional 14 approved)
  • 16 units on Town Hall property, abutting El Camino Real
  • 100 units on town-owned property, abutting College of San Mateo
  • The remaining units are allocated to current projects in the pipeline, vacant lots, or private school and country club property

Of the units to be constructed on town-owned property, some need to be affordable. Council notes that the affordability levels for San Mateo County will enable those units to be available to educators, first responders, and seniors. For information on the town-owned multi-family housing sites, view this fact sheet.

At the January 8th, 2024 Council meeting, the two town-owned parcels were rezoned to accommodate multi-unit housing. It is important to note that no projects for these sites have been approved. The community visioning process for these projects will commence in the coming months and will include numerous opportunities for resident engagement.

View the final Housing Element document here and for more project updates, visit the Housing Element website.

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