Regional Industrial Land Preservation: Perspectives from San Francisco Bay Area Cities on a Priority Production Area Program
Research Lead: Karen Chapple
UC Campus(es): UC Berkeley
Problem Statement: Many regions in California have prepared long-term plans for goods movement, recognizing the need to develop freight facilities to accommodate the transformation and growth of logistics in the state. Yet, for most, planning for industrial lands –and related jobs –is an afterthought. The Metropolitan Planning Commission and the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) have thus decided to enact a new program that allows jurisdictions to prioritize industrial uses (the Priority Production Areas or PPAs). PPAs will then be included in the region’s Sustainable Communities Strategies. Although ABAG’s Executive Board adopted the program in early 2017, and it is mentioned in the 2040 Plan Bay Area, the program has not yet been developed.
Project Description: This report lays the groundwork for ABAG-MTC as they develop a the PPA program. The PPA program will include locally designated industrial zones and seek to identify resources for these areas, while recognizing the need to balance land uses and that creating housing across the Bay Area is of primary importance. This study initiated outreach and engagement with local jurisdictions and experts to gain a better understanding of how local jurisdictions define their industrial space, how well current zoning works for their industrial land users, and the degree to which a PPA designation could help with business operations, retention or shaping the area’s future development. This report synthesizes input received as part of this engagement. Given that the PPA program is an action item of Plan Bay Area that integrates transportation and land use management into its long-range plan in an effort to meet greenhouse gas reduction targets, addressing the transportation needs associated with industrial lands could be a central component of the PPA program. Therefore, this report also explores both goods movement and worker accessibility challenges mentioned by city staff and experts and recommends how these PPA program could address these issues. Going forward, ABAG-MTC will need to prioritize the suggestions and ideas generated through this initial outreach process and determine which challenges and needs can feasibly be addressed with the PPA program.