For those of us who like living in a large metropolitan area that's probably going to get much more crowded, this is apparently the places to stay.
A recent report prepared for the Association of Bay Area Governments and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission suggests that this region is anticipated to grow by more than 2 million people, from about 7,350,000 today in the Bay Area to about 9,430,000 by the year 2035. This population growth would require around 902,000 new housing units with Contra Costa, Alameda and Santa Clara counties taking the lion's share of growth.
San Ramon will see continued growth, adding 36,682 homes to its current stock of 22,061 for a 66.3 percent gain by 2035 if these two agencies and the state's Regional Housing Need Allocation agency have their way. But Danville appears to get a break in this housing frenzy, being asked by ABAG, the MTC, the state's Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) formula and the its Housing and Community Development agency (HCD) to boost the town's housing stock by only 8 percent to 17,920.
Pleasanton's current number of 24,034 apartments and homes would increase by 32.9 percent to 33,819. That would amount to a growth in housing units of 9,785 by 2035, or a 40.7 percent increase according to the IVS report.
Livermore, who will have to add 12,138 new housing units, will see a 42.3 percent growth to a 2035 total of 40,801 homes, whereas much smaller -- yet faster-growing Dublin -- will see the number of its homes and apartments increasing by a whopping 107 percent to 32,216 units, up nearly 17,000 from today's 15,572.
The housing scenario is coupled with major increases in total jobs in much of the region. By 2035, a 38.6 percent increase in the jobs sector is projected for Contra Costa County. Alameda County would see a 37 percent increase with similar jumps in San Mateo County (37 percent), San Francisco (31 percent)and Santa Clara County (44 percent).
In terms of housing, the Bay Area's large cities of San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland and Fremont will still be the top four by a wide margin in 2035 with San Jose growing by another 43 percent to pass the 1 million population mark and stay well ahead of San Francisco.
Santa Clara County, in fact, is projected to add another 254,000 housing units by 2035, a 41.3 percent increase that is far above the other eight counties that are part of the IVS report. Besides Santa Clara, the counties IVS counts as being part of the Bay Area are Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Solano and Sonoma. Altogether, ABAG and the MTC want to see these nine counties growing by 33.8 percent -- or 903,000 more homes and apartments -- to a housing total of 3.6 million.
Officials are quick to point out that many obstacles stand in the way of ABAG and the MTC's effort to achieve its household and jobs gains, including transportation, sewer and school capacities.
These agencies agree that Initial Vision Scenario, prepared to meet a 2008 state law requiring a 25-year plan for a "Sustainable Communities Strategy," is just a start. Public hearings are planned to better define the plan and its blueprint for future city and county growth.