The City of Pomona can accommodate the addition of 15,000 homes, from granny flats to loft apartments above shops and restaurants, in the next eight years.
The Pomona City Council approved a housing plan intended to satisfy a state mandate this week. The plan outlined how the city can foster the development of thousands of new units for residents with varying incomes, the Daily Bulletin reported.
The new housing tally comes from the approved 2021-2029 Housing Element as part of the city’s general plan. The plan is required by the state to ensure that cities find room for their housing needs.
Pomona, a city in east Los Angeles County once known as “Queen of the Citrus Belt,” has 151,000 residents, according to the 2020 Census.
The state is requiring Pomona to make room for 10,558 new housing units – including 2,799 units for those with very low-incomes, 1,339 units for those with low-incomes, 1,510 units for moderate-incomes and 4,910 units for above-moderate incomes.
Add the other 2,552 units already in the city’s development pipeline – including 1,253 accessory dwelling units and an equal number on already zoned land – and the city expects to have room for 14,878 units, said Planning Manager Ata Khan.
The city has identified lots for future housing on such major corridors such as Holt and Garey avenues, Phillips Ranch and in the city’s downtown. Zoning shows 63 vacant parcels identified as possible sites.
None of the targeted sites have any homes, according to a city staff report.
Studies show Pomoma needs to find housing for some occupants with disabilities, others living in extreme poverty and some who are currently homeless.
Homes within industrial areas face growing environmental concerns, especially those on the east side of town, Khan said.
A group called Pomona United for Stable Housing praised the new housing plan, but said rent stabilization would further protect current tenants.
“This study is going to take too long, we need something done now,” PUSH member Yesenia Miranda Mesa said. “We need to protect, encourage and help our current residents prosper in Pomona not push them out. They (tenants) have a right to also enjoy the growth of our city.”
Pomona officials said they’d look into the feasibility of rent control within the following months, the newspaper reported.
The city’s housing plan will now go before the California Department of Housing and Community Development before getting final certification, which is expected by summer 2022.
[DB] – Dana Bartholomew