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Public Policy Newsletter Article

San Francisco Linkage Fee Increase Passes with Negotiated Rate for Lab Space

  • 2019-12-18T04:21:00.000+0000
  • Bay Area
  • Author: Melanie Cohn

In November, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors gave final approval to increase fees on new office construction in hopes of financing more affordable housing. District Six Supervisor Matt Haney proposed the increase to the city’s Jobs-Housing Linkage Fee earlier this year.

Biocom worked with the San Francisco Chamber and CLSA to negotiate a lower increase to the linkage fee for laboratory space than Supervisor Haney originally proposed. Haney asked for an increase in the laboratory fee from the original $19.04 per square foot to $46.43. Due to our efforts, the rate was adjusted to a phased-in increase concluding at $38.37. The range starts at $31.43 (for projects that submitted a Development Application prior to 9/10/2019) to $34.90 (for projects between 9/11/2019 to 1/1/2021) and ending at $38.37 (for projects after 1/1/2021).

Supervisor Haney created a new fee tier for "small capital development projects" with 50,000 gross square feet and below. This fee will also be phased in, starting at $46.98 and ending at $62.64. Large cap project fees were raised to $69.90. Finally, the ordinance now calls for an update to the Jobs Housing Nexus Analysis and a re-evaluation of the Jobs Housing Linkage Fee every five years.