6 Wins for Social Equity Network and the Regional Transportation Plan

6 Wins Photo 2 c. 2012 Urban Habitat/Christine Joy FerrerWho We Are

The 6 Wins for Social Equity Network works to ensure that the Bay Area’s transit, housing, jobs, and sustainability policies break the patterns of segregation, sprawl, and pollution that have plagued our communities for generations. We are a group of more than 30 social justice, faith, public health, and environmental organizations that came together in 2010 to advance:

(1) Affordable Housing,
(2) Robust and Affordable Local Transit Service,
(3) Investment Without Displacement,
(4) Healthy and Safe Communities,
(5) Economic Opportunity and
(6) Community Power.

We believe that by working together, we can build a stronger and more equitable future for everyone.

Our voices are many and our perspectives diverse. But we are of one mind on this: The Bay Area’s future transportation and housing plan, called “One Bay Area,” must serve residents of ALL races and incomes equally. It must address current systemic inequities and avoid creating new ones.

What's at Stake

Decades of unjust public policies have systematically excluded low-income communities of color from opportunity while fueling sprawl, car dependence, and all of the environmental and economic problems that come with them— from global warming to the suburban housing bubble.

6 Wins Photo 1 c. 2012 Urban Habitat/Christine Joy FerrerToday, instead of a transit system that provides a leg up to good jobs and schools, we have a separate and unequal system that leads to inequality of opportunity. Most low-income people and people of color lack reliable and affordable transit to get where they need to go every day. That’s in part because the Bay Area has invested hundreds of billions of dollars in highway expansion and commuter rail at the expense of local bus service.

At the same time, homes in both urban and suburban areas that have good access to jobs, such as San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Oakland, and the Tri-Valley, are increasingly unaffordable for people with an average household income. Working families face an impossible choice: Live close to work in overcrowded or unsafe conditions, or struggle through a long and expensive commute to live in a more affordable home far away.

The same policies that drove segregation and disinvestment in communities of color also generated suburban sprawl, excess driving, and air pollution that threaten our health and contribute to the climate crisis. Because social inequality and environmental decline share common roots, they must be tackled together to find shared solutions.

The Opportunity: One Bay Area

One Bay Area

One Bay Area is the name of the regional planning effort to achieve the GHG
reduction goals mandated by SB 375. It has three main parts.

RTP: Regional Transportation Plan—Determines how the Bay Area will
spend $200+ billion in transportation funds over 25 years. Adopted by

SCS: Sustainable Communities Strategy—Plans for land use and housing
that mesh with the RTP. It must demonstrate how the Bay Area will house
its entire population at all income levels, and reduce vehicle miles traveled
to decrease greenhouse gasses. Adopted by MTC and ABAG jointly.

RHNA: Regional Housing Need Allocation—Quantifies the amount of
new housing, including homes affordable to low-income families, that each
city must plan for over the next 8 years to meet existing and future housing
needs. Adopted by ABAG.
A new law has arrived to help California reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from driving. Senate Bill 375 (SB 375) requires regional agencies to plan future housing, job growth, and transit investments together, rather than separately, to decrease driving—what some people call “smart growth.” In the Bay Area, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) and the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) are responsible for the planning required by SB 375. Their plan, dubbed “One Bay Area,” includes a Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) and Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS).

One Bay Area planning decisions under way now will determine how $240 billion of public transportation money is spent over 30 years. The process will also influence where the region’s new housing, including affordable homes, will be built. Taken together, One Bay Area plans have the potential to shape our lives and determine whether we will indeed be One Bay Area—equal in opportunity and health—or continue as many Bay Areas, segregated by unequal access to transit and housing options and subjected to unequal environmental and health burdens like air pollution and hazardous traffic levels.

6 Wins Photo 3 c. 2012 Urban Habitat/Christine Joy Ferrer
What We’re Fighting For:
6 Wins for Bay Area Communities

Affordable Housing: More affordable housing near jobs, reliable public transit, good schools, parks and recreation within healthy neighborhoods
Robust and Affordable Local Transit Service: Local bus service that is frequent, reliable, and affordable, connecting people to opportunity, and Free Youth Bus Passes in communities where students depend on public transit to get to
Investment Without Displacement: Investments and incentives that strengthen and stabilize communities vulnerable to gentrification and displacement
Healthy and Safe Communities: Healthy and safe communities have clean air, are connected by robust public transit, and provide safe walking and bicycling access between housing, economic opportunities, and essential destinations
Economic Opportunity: More quality green jobs, transit-related jobs, and access to economic opportunity for marginalized populations within communities of concern and throughout the region
Community Power: Greater power for working class people of color in local and regional decision-making

We Need Your Help—Get Involved!

Creating systemic change requires the strength and diversity of many voices. A lot is at stake, so let’s work together to get this right. As the Bay Area tackles regional planning and climate change, we invite you to work with us to win healthy communities, with good housing and transportation choices, for everyone.

To join us in our fight for justice, contact
Lindsay Imai at lindsay[@]urbanhabitat.org or Parisa Fatehi-Weeks at pfatehi[@]publicadvocates.org.

6 Wins Photo 4 c. 2012 Urban Habitat/Christine Joy Ferrer