November 2013: Demystifying Housing Supply/ Demand Theory for San Francisco

A community forum presented by urbanIDEA

Co-sponsored by: San Francisco Information Clearinghouse, San Francisco Progressive Media Center, San Francisco Magazine


  Watched the full video.

Thursday November 7, 2013 | 6-8pm

LGBT Community Center | 1800 Market St


RSVP on Facebook HERE.


  • Doug Engmann — Engmann Options
  • Calvin Welch — San Francisco Information Clearinghouse
  • Michael Yarne — Build Inc.
  • Tim Colen — Housing Action Coalition
  • Farhad Manjoo — Writer, San Francisco Magazine
  • Christina Olague — Past Planning Commission President
  • Fernando Marti (moderator) — Council of Community Housing Organizations

Can we really build our way to affordability?

Economists, city planners, policy think tanks, and media outlets have lately been advocating for a supply-side “solution” to San Francisco’s longstanding housing affordability crisis. Build, build, build is the argument – at a rate of 5,000 units of housing construction per year for 20 years (far above what San Francisco has ever built). Eventually, and with enough incentives and deregulation to stimulate and sustain that unprecedented volume of development, they argue that the price of housing in San Francisco will stabilize and actually decline.

But does this Economics 101 theory really work for the housing market in San Francisco?

Why is housing now getting more expensive and out of reach for most San Franciscans even as more is being built in this latest wave of development?