Where Should We Build as a Region?


The RHNA HMC (Regional Housing Needs Assessment Housing Methodology Committee) can sound like a jumble of jargon. Yet this committee is grappling with some of the biggest questions in the region around how and where we grow.  California state law recognizes that local governments play a vital role in developing affordable housing and mandates that cities plan for new homes. The RHNA process identifies the number of new homes the Bay Area… Read More

Protect Coyote Valley: Build In Urban Areas


Coyote Valley is 7,400 acres of lush farmland and vast open space that provides an awe-inspiring landscape to explore. It is a crucial water resource for Silicon Valley. Its flood plain protects San Jose. It is home to wildlife, including endangered species. Coyote Valley is critical to the ecosystem of the entire South Bay. We must preserve it and encourage growth within existing cities and towns.  Originally scheduled for April 30, 2020,… Read More

Urge Concord to Support Affordable Homes

Concord Naval Weapons Station

For over a decade, Greenbelt Alliance has worked to protect 2,200 acres of the East Bay’s former Concord Naval Weapons Station—an area double the size of Golden Gate Park—while encouraging a long-planned 13,000-unit housing development. The development will provide 25% affordable housing, making a dramatic impact on our regional housing crisis. But all of this could disappear this week if the Concord City Council is not able to finalize a project proposal… Read More

Mixed Election Results Tell Us It’s Time to Get Creative

March 2020 Mixed Election Results

Here at Greenbelt Alliance, election day is always hotly anticipated, even when it is not a presidential primary. We’ve been working on local land-use ballot measures since the 1960s and have seen great success (and a few heartbreaking losses) in locking in Urban Growth Boundaries around our cities, stopping sprawl development from taking over precious natural and working lands, and securing much-needed funding for permanent protection of open space, increased public transportation… Read More

What Are Urban Growth Boundaries and Why Do We Need Them?

An urban growth boundary (UGB) separates urban areas from the surrounding natural and agricultural lands, or greenbelts. It puts a limit on city expansion.

A Win for Affordable Homes: Caltrain Adopts 30% Affordable Housing Policy


On Thursday, February 6, 2020, the Caltrain Board of Directors unanimously approved a highly anticipated policy requiring at least 30% of homes built on Caltrain land—not used for railroad operations or improvements—to be affordable. It also mandates that housing developments must be built at a minimum density level of 4 stories at 50 units per acre. This win is a culmination of more than 3 years of work from Greenbelt Alliance and… Read More

Climate-Smart Solutions for Solano County

Solano County View of Mt Diablo

With the arrival of our newest staff member Kevin Riley, Greenbelt Alliance is excited to continue our work in Solano County, one of the largest jurisdictions across the Bay Area. Since 2017, we’ve been using our downtown Fairfield office to work closely with our Solano County partners. This work includes continuing to build on the educational outreach for both local residents and their elected leaders and incorporating powerful messages around the importance of… Read More

Final Report Review: Resilient & Equitable Strategies for the Bay Area’s Future

MTC ABAG Final Future Report

The critical issues facing the Bay Area—from transportation and housing to the economy, the environment, and social equity—are probed in the Metropolitan Transportation Commission/Association of Bay Area Government’s (MTC/ABAG) new 90-plus page Futures Final Report, Resilient and Equitable Strategies for the Bay Area’s Future. This is the final report of the Horizon initiative, which explored how the Bay Area may fare in an uncertain future, and how it could respond to uncertainty… Read More

Adapting to a Changing Climate


On January 30, 2020, Greenbelt Alliance held a special reception and fireside chat to discuss the future of the Bay Area in a changing climate. We’re working to solve some of the region’s most pressing challenges, including local solutions for sea level rise, wildfire, drought, and flood protection, as well as how the Bay Area can embrace climate-smart growth. Executive Director Amanda Brown-Stevens sat down with Laurie Johnson—an internationally-recognized urban planner specializing… Read More

San Jose Supports Measure E for More Affordable Homes

Yes on Measure E San Jose

Greenbelt Alliance urges San Jose voters to say YES to Measure E. Measure E will provide affordable homes for seniors, veterans, people who are disabled, and low-income families. It will help homeless residents move into shelters and/or permanent homes. It will provide more housing options near jobs and transit, reducing our greenhouse gas emissions.