California releases map of local government-owned surplus properties and housing element sites to spur affordable housing development

January 24, 2023
Aerial Image of Housing Development

Aerial Image of Housing Development

Sacramento, CA —  

The Department of General Services (DGS) in partnership with the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) released an interactive public map of property identified by local governments to help developers find land for housing development. The Housing and Local Land Development Opportunity Map shows potential development sites identified in local housing elements (housing plans) adopted on or after January 1, 2021, and locally-owned surplus and excess sites identified in housing element Annual Progress Reports.

Governor Gavin Newsom and the California Legislature have advanced a multi-pronged approach to accelerating housing production to meet the state’s goal of more than 1 million affordable homes and 2.5 million homes total by 2030, including encouraging affordable housing development on locally-owned surplus land and setting a higher bar for local housing plans.

This new map allows developers to view all sites identified by cities and counties for housing through their housing elements, as well as locally-owned surplus and excess land, which may be subject to affordable housing requirements when disposed of through the Surplus Land Act. Further the map allows these sites to be overlaid with key datasets, including the HCD/Tax Credit Allocation Committee Opportunity Maps, Cal EnviroScreen 4.0, and fire hazard data to assist them in applying for state affordable housing funding sources and accessing streamlining benefits.

“We are proud to have developed and be hosting this new mapping tool,” said Ana Lasso, director of the California Department of General Services. “Solving the affordability crisis facing our state requires collaboration at all levels, and this new tool shows what can be accomplished when the Administration, the Legislature, and local partners collaborate.”

“We are excited to work with our state and local government partners to provide this new mapping tool to help developers identify local government-owned sites for affordable housing, and ensure the many sites identified through our robust housing element process are easier to find and acquire,” said Gustavo Velasquez, director of the California Department of Housing and Community Development. “Tools like this are part of our larger strategy to accelerate affordable housing production, to meet the goals California has laid out in its Statewide Housing Plan for more than 1 million affordable homes and 2.5 million homes total by 2030.”

Since January 2021, developers have started to acquire sites from local agencies through the Surplus Land Act and, as of January 24, 2023 are expected to develop 7,778 homes, including 5,627 affordable homes on acquired sites, in the coming years. There are currently housing element sites for 226 jurisdictions and locally-owned surplus and excess sites for 87 jurisdictions on the map.

Today’s announcement is an open call to home builders to take advantage of the benefits of this map created as a result of Senate Bill 6 (Jim Beall, 2019) and Assembly Bill 1255 (Robert Rivas, 2019).

HCD is also hosting a webinar on February 24, 2023 to introduce this tool.

Developers interested in learning more about the sites available should contact the local government directly.

For questions about data and how to use the map, please email For questions about the Surplus Land Act, please email For questions about housing element sites inventories, please email

The Department of General Services acts as the business manager for the state of California. DGS helps state government better serve the public by providing services to state agencies including procurement and acquisition solutions, real estate management, leasing and design services, environmentally friendly transportation, and architectural oversight and funding for the construction of safe schools.

The California Department of Housing and Community Development is dedicated to the preservation and expansion of safe and affordable housing, so more Californians have a place to call home. Our team works to ensure an adequate supply of housing for Californians and promotes the growth of strong communities through its leadership, policy, and program development. For more information, please visit and follow us on Twitter, @California_HCD; Facebook, @CaliforniaHCD; and LinkedIn.

Contact Details:

DGS Public Affairs