Friday, October 16, 2009

CBA to cover residential development in Rohnert Park, Cal.

It was reported this week that Sonoma Mountain Village, a mixed use residential development proposed for a 200-acre former industrial site, will be covered by a CBA. The agreement was negotiated by the Sonoma County Accountable Development Coalition, which includes labor, housing and environmental groups.

Sonoma Mountain Village, which will have nearly 2,000 homes and cost $1 billion, hopes to be a sustainable project. In addition to following the city's green building ordinance, the project is the first in north America to be endorsed by One Planet Communities. Brad Baker, president and CEO of developer Codding Enterprises, suggested that the CBA fits into the company's sustainability mission. “When we originally came up with the concept of Sonoma Mountain Village," he said, "we wanted it to be something special and unique and be a mixed-use project and be green and sustainable.... By entering into these agreements, we are not just talking about it — we are doing it.” As another Codding Enterprises representative put it, "It all touches on social equity."

The CBA includes a number of important benefits, including a commitment to pay living wages, a promise of union neutrality, and a 15% inclusionary housing requirement. Other requirements related to transportation, environmental reviews, land use, water use, and open space preservation are included in the CBA.

1 comment:

Ben Boyce said...

As a member of the negotiating team which worked on this CBA, and as the Director of the Living Wage Coalition, one of the core members of the Accountable Development Coalition, I have to issue a minor correction to the this account of the content of the CBA. Codding Associates agreed to pay a Living Wage rate to its direct employees. However, we were not able to secure our original objective, which was to include in the CBA a Living Wage provision for the tenants and contractors at the site, which will account for most of the jobs. I think that it would be most appropriate to describe the Living Wage provision in the CBA as aspirational, not mandated.

Ben Boyce
Living Wage Coalition