A new bill in the California legislature, Assembly Bill AB 1401, aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while bringing down the costs of constructing new homes. The bill would prohibit cities from enforcing parking requirements on residential and commercial properties, a bold proposition in a state where most new development over the past 50 years has been shaped by the prioritization of easy automobile access. Our new analysis looks at the potential impact of the bill on housing in California.
Leveraging our 2019 Terner California Residential Land Use Survey, we find that AB 1401 would significantly alter how much parking would be required in many cities statewide. Many developments may continue to provide parking on-site regardless of AB 1401 because of consumer demand or investor requirements. But the legislation would allow parking levels to be based on financial feasibility, rather than the requirements dictated by local regulations.