As a follow-on to my Marin Post article about the Revitalization Assessment for Golden Gate Village, I have submitted the following comment letter to CVR, the Marin Housing Authority's consultant.
Thanks for the invitation to submit questions and comments on the CVR Revitalization Feasibility Assessment Draft.
Summary: The CVR Revitalization Feasibility Assessment lacks key information re CVR’s recommendation to adopt Scenario B. Before adopting this risky recommendation, the Marin Housing Authority Commission should consider these key points to move towards a higher probability of success.
CVR recommends Scenario B: Partial Redevelopment and Green Rehabilitation with RAD Conversion
(Narrative, p.10). My article published on The Marin Post (linked and
cut & pasted below) raises questions for CVR to address:https://marinpost.org/blog/2017/12/31/golden-gate-village-risky-gamble-with-cvrs-recommendations-for-revitalization, including:
- In measureable terms, define “partial redevelopment” and “comprehensive green rehabilitation.”
- Compare how partial redevelopment and comprehensive green rehabilitation of Scenario B compares with “comprehensive green rehabilitation” of Scenario A, including number of new units, rehab units, the elements of “green,” estimated revenue and expenses; and the timeline.
- Define RAD Conversion and what it means to GGV? Provide a diagram of how it would work, including tasks, timeline, costs, and impact.
- Scenario A and B depend on RAD Conversion. Explain the contradiction between CVR’s recommendation and the concluding statement in Appendix A (p. 11-12), where a CVR author writes,
While these programs (referring to RAD and others) have helped many housing authorities…, they are highly competitive, cost prohibitive, and require high thresholds for participation. In most instances, these grants are not widely accessible to smaller housing authorities (like Marin) with limited resources.”
The report (Narrative, p. 4) says CVR was hired to evaluate “the
feasibility of the GGV revitalization options: 1) Historic Preservation
and 2) Mixed Income options by analyzing market data and
available/potential financial sources.” Please clarify:
- CVR reports (Narrative, p. 4)
“No formal redevelopment plans were ever provided to CVR during this feasibility analysis process by MHA.”
How, then, did you do your work? Where did the data come from? How do you justify making site visits and writing a report with recommendations for “revitalization” if no plans were provided? Where did the Revitalization Options in Appendix E come from?
- CVR reports (Narrative, p. 9) that the two options they were hired to evaluate (Historic Preservation or Mixed-Income) were infeasible. What and where is the data that supports CVR’s conclusion? When did CVR come to this conclusion?
- CVR reports (Narrative, p. 9) that the CVR team “felt there were other options that were in the best interest of revitalization and needed to be looked at” and they moved ahead to explore six scenarios. When did CVR change the scope of work of the contract study? How was the GGVRC and community informed of the change?
- CVR Appendix I: Meeting Materials includes the July 17 Community Meeting agenda, which still lists the options as Historic Preservation and Mixed Income. The presentation included a PowerPoint of financial analysis, reviewed financial and funding scenarios, clarified actual costs of redevelopment based on GPNA, clarified federal funding programs, among other topics, but this data is not included in the report. Please add the Powerpoint presentation in the final Feasibility report.
- The CVR Community meeting agenda for September 16th, the 3rd and final meeting, makes no mention of the six Scenarios. When and by what process did CVR identify and analyze the six options and then and select Scenarios A and B? When and how was the public informed?
The Marin Housing Authority Commission should set a higher bar for the quality of the data, financial analysis, and recommendations regarding the revitalization of Golden Gate Village. To date, the data and the process is insufficient to warrant a motion to accept the report and Scenario B.
Thank you for addressing these comments and concerns.