Foreword

This analysis was produced with support from ABAG member towns, cities, and counties. The report is intended to provide an evaluation of trends and an understanding of current economic conditions in the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area. The study has been completed at a time when many new resources exist for tracking the economy, including a website designed and hosted by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) called Vital Signs, which provides snapshots of trends for a wide range of indicators. Building from these valuable resources, State of the Region synthesizes information from economic, demographic, and land use indicators to assess how the region is changing and to what degree current strategies toward urban infill are being put into effect and to identify challenges that could be addressed in the regional context to meet the requirements for a sustainable community strategy for the Bay Area. More detailed information on many of these indicators is available through links on the website hosting this report http://reports.abag.ca.gov/sotr/2015/ and on the Vital Signs website at http://www.vitalsigns.mtc.ca.gov.

Our special thanks to Kristen Carnarius, David Vautin and Ken Kirkey of MTC, to Stephen Levy of Center for the Continuing Study of the California Economy, and to Egon Terplan of SPUR for their careful review of all or parts of the document. Any remaining errors and interpretations are our own.

Special Note

In April 2016, ABAG updated Table 4.1 "Bay Area Progress in Meeting 2007-2014 Regional Housing Need Allocation (RHNA)," Figure 4.10 "Percent of RHNA Permitted by Income Category," and Figure 4.11 "Comparison of Proportion of RHNA and Permits Issued by Income Category." Table 4.1 and Figures 4.10 and 4.11 now all incorporate housing permitting information for the 2007-2014 planning period jurisdictions sent to ABAG after publication of the State of the Region in February, 2015.

Association of Bay Area Governments Executive Board Leadership and Key Staff

Julie Pierce—President, Councilmember, City of Clayton
David Rabbitt—Vice President, Supervisor, County of Sonoma
Ezra Rapport—Executive Director
Brad Paul—Deputy Executive Director and Communications Director
Miriam Chion—Planning and Research Director
Duane Bay—Deputy Planning and Research Director

Association of Bay Area Governments Project Staff

Cynthia Kroll, Chief Economist and Project Director
Gillian Adams, Senior Regional Planner
Wally Charles, Administrative Secretary
Pedro Galvao, Regional Planner
Vinita Goyal, Regional Planner
Björn Griepenburg, Planning Intern
Shijia Bobby Lu, Regional Planner
Jason Munkres, Senior Regional Planner (Retired)
Aksel Olsen, Regional Planner
Hing Wong, Senior Regional Planner
Leah Zippert, Communications Officer

Photo Credits

Photo on cover, p. 79, Satelite Image by Landsat-7 on 2 January 2013 by Landsat (USGS/ESA)
Photo opposite Table of Contents, of Petaluma, by Brad Perks
Photo on p. 3, map of region, ABAG
Photo on p. 8, San Mateo, by Brad Perks
Photo on p. 9, Bay Bridge Western Span, by Aksel Olsen, ABAG
Photo on p. 11, Richmond, by Brad Perks
Photo on p. 12, San Jose, by Shutterstock
Photo on p. 13, San Francisco, by Aksel Olsen, ABAG
Photo on p. 15, Port of Oakland, by Shutterstock
Photo on p. 18, San Mateo, by Brad Perks
Photo on p. 19, Unattrributed, by Deposit Photos
Photo on p. 21, Walnut Creek, by Brad Perks
Photo on p. 37, Berkeley, by Brad Perks
Photo on p. 39, Oakland, by Aksel Olsen, ABAG
Photo on p. 48, Oakland, by Hing Wong, ABAG
Photo on p. 49, Palo Alto, by ABAG staff
Photo on p. 78, Pescadero, by Aksel Olsen, ABAG
Photo on p. 81, Oakland, by iStock

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