Monday, June 06, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO - 'Yes-In-My-Back-Yard' Movement

"The San Francisco activists who say please build in my backyard" PBS NewsHour 6/2/2016


SUMMARY:  Job growth in the San Francisco Bay Area has exploded in recent years and many people are being priced out.  Blame the NIMBYS, including progressives fighting to protect their quaint neighborhoods by blocking any new construction.  Activists battling income equality are fighting to change this with the new Yes-In-My-Back-Yard movement.  Special correspondent Duarte Geraldino reports.

MAN:  Whose house?

AUDIENCE:  Our house!

DUARTE GERALDINO (NewsHour):  In the San Francisco Bay Area, it seems any small group of voices can derail a proposed housing development.

PROTESTERS:  Ed lee, can't you see we don't need no luxury?

DUARTE GERALDINO:  Some urban liberals wage war on so-called luxury housing.  Around here, the going price for a two-bedroom is over four grand a month.

PROTESTERS:  No one Bay Area.

DUARTE GERALDINO:  Meanwhile, some suburban conservatives fight against subsidized housing.

WOMAN:  Stand up for your property rights before they get taken away.  They want to take away your decision of where you're going to live and how you're going to live.

DUARTE GERALDINO:  But there is a new and growing group protesting what it sees as the not in my backyard, or NIMBY, attitudes of both the left and the right.  This group calls itself YIMBY, Yes In My Backyard.

WOMAN:  Welcome, everybody, to the rally for housing.

DUARTE GERALDINO:  Sonja Trauss, hobbled by a broken foot, is hopping mad about the lack of new construction, which she says is inflating housing prices throughout the Bay Area.

SONJA TRAUSS, Bay Area Renters' Federation:  It's caused by zoning, but it's also caused by super local control.  That's really what it is.

DUARTE GERALDINO:  And you're trying to disrupt that?


DUARTE GERALDINO:  YIMBY groups are fighting to ease local development requirements originally meant to maximize community input, but that today effectively delay new projects for years, meaning newcomers have to outbid existing residents for a place to live.

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