Jan 13, 2016
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Richmond City Council on Tuesday approved the 155-unit affordable housing project at 5620 Central Ave. (project site pictured).

Citing a need for more affordable housing in Richmond, council on Tuesday publicly ratified a settlement with the developer, which had sued the city over several conditions imposed on the project by the Richmond Planning Commission last year. Councilmember Eduardo Martinez was the only “no” vote Tuesday and Councilmember Jovanka Beckles abstained.

Neighbors in the Richmond Annex neighborhood as well as members of the Richmond Progressive Alliance continued to voice concern about the development, arguing against a potential for increased traffic and questioning the definition of affordable housing. Opponents are particularly concerned about the potential for flooding from an adjacent creek (pictured below). City staff, however, says the settlement includes hiring a creek design expert to naturalize the waterway and recommend how far the development should be set back from its shore.


Also, the project still must undergo the city’s Design Review Board process, where city engineers and contractors will determine if the plans do enough to address concerns around the creek, traffic and other impacts from the five-story development. 

“The building isn’t going to come up until these issues are addressed,” Richmond Planning Director Richard Mitchell said.

To read the agreement reached between the city and developer and for a brief history of the project, read our earlier report from last week.


About the Author

Mike Aldax is the editor of the Richmond Standard. He has 13 years of journalism experience, most recently as a reporter for the San Francisco Examiner. He previously held roles as reporter and editor at Bay City News, Napa Valley Register, Garden Island Newspaper in Kaua’i, and the Queens Courier in New York City.