SF State proposes new affordable housing project for employees
The university hopes to receive state funding for the housing project after it successfully secured support for West Campus Green.
December 2, 2022
Officials at SF State will soon propose a new affordable housing project for its employees located at Lot 25 on Winston Avenue.
Educators’ Village, which is the name of the proposal, is a joint effort between SF State, City College of San Francisco, and the San Francisco Unified School District. The multiphase housing project would house employees from the three educational branches to provide affordable living options.
Because “Educators’ Village” is still a proposal, the rental costs are still unclear.
According to SF State President Lynn Mahoney, the university will turn to the state and possibly donors to finance Educators’ Village.
“I don’t know what we’re going to ask for here,” she said. “I don’t have those details yet, but I expect we’re going to make a very ambitious ask of the state.”
According to Mahoney, it is essential to build more affordable housing for educators who teach in San Francisco, where the median price of a one bedroom apartment is $3,504.
“If we can get the state to support the cost, we could charge less to live there and it would help build teachers and educators for the city.” Mahoney said.
SF State recently received $116 million from the state for the construction of the 750-unit West Campus Green dormitory. The money came from a $2 billion special allocation from the legislature to support student housing at California colleges. Mahoney said this is the first time the state extended this kind of support to the university.
“Until this new hall, we’ve never received any state support, we had to fund it 100%” Mahoney said.
SF State is not allowed to use money from the budget to finance housing, so the university had to rely on loans and bonds for any housing projects.
“I get asked this all the time, ‘why don’t you put some of it into housing?’” Mahoney said. “I’m not allowed. It’s illegal. Housing is a separate entity..”
Mahoney said the cost of student housing is a direct result of the loans SF State used to fund much needed housing. For example, the university had to finance 35% of West Campus Green through a state bond.
She hopes the state can provide at least 50% of the funding for Educators’ Village.
According to Vice President for University Enterprises Jason Porth, housing is the reason faculty recruitment and retention is becoming more difficult.
“They turn the position down because of the [housing] prices,” Porth said. “Housing has been a concern amongst faculty and staff for a long time.”
Porth said the university, alongside CCSF and SFUSD, will do everything they can to secure as much support for the project as they can.
“We’re going to turn everywhere we can,” Porth said. “We want to put a coalition together to fund the project.”
The project is expected to have at least 250-units after the finalization of phase one. Porth said they may add additional phases for the project, however it depends on how much demand there is for units.