Every eight years, the State reviews its housing needs and mandates every city to “make way” for more housing at the local level. The 6th Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) has been tabulated, and Clayton has been assigned 570 units of housing … an approximate 14% increase to the existing 4,000 housing units in our small city. Given how substantially “built out” Clayton is, there are huge challenges relative to infrastructure, transportation, and environmental concerns.
Clayton is not alone, as every city in California is being saddled with similar dilemmas with the requirements to zone up to 20% more housing. No city desires these mandated changes. All city appeals (including Clayton’s) to the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) were denied outright.
What will the future of Clayton look like? The city of Clayton is actively seeking input from its citizens! Initial community outreach has included community meetings, and an initial on-line survey of potential housing sites. A preliminary map of housing locations was presented to the city council on January 4, 2022. The next steps are to hone those maps with additional public input.
Clayton will be initiating an assertive campaign to inform the community of the need for their participation in this housing discussion. The campaign will include newspaper, internet/social media, and direct distribution of literature to homes. We need as many voices as possible to discuss how to meet the requirements, while maintaining our City’s small-town character and western charm that we all love.
In late February 2022, Clayton will be using an on-line simulation game, “Balancing Act”, to allow residents to place 570 housing units in preliminary mapped areas and identify other potential areas for consideration. In this manner, residents can indicate which locations are preferable towards higher density.
Information on efforts and preparation for 2023 Housing Element can be found on the “Housing Element” button on the front page of the city website www.claytonca.gov.
There you can go to the “Get Involved” tab and sign up for updates, so you don’t miss important upcoming communications.

Contact Mayor Peter Cloven at peterc@claytonca.gov or 925-673-7320.