Repeal charter ban on multi-family homes

David Howard’s letter (“Only the greedy profit,” Oct. 24) is correct in that repealing the charter ban on multi-family homes (1973 Measure A) will, by itself, not relieve Alameda’s housing crisis. The letter presents a credible argument for maintaining the ban as developers by themselves cannot subsidize all of the affordable homes needed to keep the housing crisis from growing worse. 

Still, we should repeal the ban on multi-family homes. The resulting compact growth could support both construction jobs and more vibrant commercial districts along Park and Webster streets and at South Shore Shopping Center. Such growth will also support improvements in bus and other transport services throughout the city. 

I beleive, eventually, businesses fleeing the high cost of homes in the Bay Area and growing homeless encampments will convince San Francisco Bay Area and California voters, philanthropists and businesses to allocate the billions of dollars needed annually to construct the affordable homes needed to end the housing crisis. 


William “Bill” Smith