Local government officials from across the U.S. discuss how they’re changing zoning to make it easier to build homes like duplexes.

In recent years, cities across the country have begun passing reforms to zoning, changing policies that have been in place for decades.

San Jose, where 94% of residential land is zoned exclusively for single-family homes, is now considering a similar change through a concept called Opportunity Housing. The results could have a big impact – the New York Times cites research that if 10% of San Jose’s 5,000 square foot lots added a second unit, our community would have 15,000 new places for people to live.

Catalyze SV & Excite Credit Union invite you to join us for a dynamic panel bringing together government officials from across the U.S. who have evaluated & passed similar zoning changes.

We hope you’ll join us for this unique opportunity to engage with these experts as they share their insights and answer questions from you. Our confirmed panelists include:

  • Lisa Bender, Minneapolis City Council President from Minneapolis, MN
  • Love Jonson, Transportation Demand Specialist, Portland Department of Transportation from Portland, OR
  • Greg Sandlund, Acting Planning Director of the City of Sacramento from Sacramento, CA


  • 5:00 – 5:05 pm: Panelists & participants call into Zoom; as participants enter the meeting, music plays
  • 5:05 – 5:15 pm: Catalyze SV’s Executive Director offers welcome, requests questions in the “Chat” function & shares ground rules for discussion, introduces moderator
  • 5:15 – 6:25 pm: Moderator asks panelists questions, including a couple from participants
  • 6:25 – 6:30 pm: Wrap up & next steps

Do you have questions you’d like to ask the panel? Email them ahead of time to The sooner you send in your questions, the more likely they will be answered!

Background – According to the City of San Jose:

“Opportunity Housing refers to enabling multi-unit housing on properties with a Residential Neighborhood General Plan land use designation. In San José, these are typically properties in single-family neighborhoods.

Staff and the General Plan Review Task Force explored allowing up to four units per parcel that could include a mix of a single-family home, duplex, triplex, or fourplex for a total of four dwelling units on the parcel while generally maintaining zoning setbacks and heights. This type of development was allowed in San José prior to World War II and still exists in many older neighborhoods.

Opportunity Housing typically creates more affordable housing by design since units are usually smaller than a single-family home and are created on one parcel, saving land and infrastructure costs.”

The purpose of this event is to:

  • disseminate accurate information to Silicon Valley community members about the issue of Opportunity Housing;
  • share knowledge about how other jurisdictions are implementing changes to make building homes like duplexes easier; and
  • strengthen public discourse as Silicon Valley cities like San Jose consider zoning changes in 2021.

A huge thank you to our Presenting Sponsor, Excite Credit Union, as well as our Supporting Sponsor, the League of Women Voters of San Jose/Santa Clara.

American Sign Language interpretation will be available.

Would you like to be a Presenting Sponsor (financial contribution required) or a Supporting Sponsor of this event? We’d love to have you join us! Email us at

March 22nd
5:00PM - 6:30PM
Online Event