Housing Incentive Pool Grants

The Housing Incentive Pool grant program encourages the production and preservation of affordable housing.

Noah Berger

The Housing Incentive Pool provides transportation grants to promote the production and preservation of affordable housing.

Established by MTC in October 2018, the Housing Incentive Pool includes $76 million in funding for transportation projects, including $58 million in flexible federal funds through the second round of the One Bay Area Grant (OBAG 2) program and $18 million in local funds available for project selection by MTC through a funding exchange.

View MTC Resolution 4348 for complete Housing Incentive Pool details.

Rewards Top Performers

MTC will distribute $71 million in Housing Incentive Pool grants on a per-unit basis to the 15 jurisdictions that issued certificates of occupancy for the greatest number of eligible housing units over the five calendar years 2018 through 2022. This includes both newly-built units, and those preserved as affordable to households with low-, very-low- and moderate-incomes.  Final award amounts for the top 15 jurisdictions were approved by MTC in March 2023 (MTC Resolution 4202). 

Call for Projects

MTC is now accepting letters of interest from the top 15 jurisdictions awarded Housing Incentive Pool funds. Eligible applicants may submit project ideas to MTC for evaluation and selection through the end of December 2024, using the guidance and templates provided below.

North Bay Housing Incentive Pool Pilot

In October 2019, MTC set aside $5 million in Housing Incentive Pool funds for a pilot program to support areas in the region of relative housing affordability with near-term transportation investments. The pilot was focused on transportation projects that support affordable housing in the North Bay counties of Marin, Napa, Solano and Sonoma, in areas that are designated for future growth and have high-quality transit service. MTC selected projects for this pilot program in July 2020.

Staff Contact

Thomas Arndt, Funding Policy & Programs
Phone: 415-820-7983
Email: tarndt@bayareametro.gov

Housing Production Data

Visit the Vital Signs website to understand the demand for housing and the development climate in the region.

One Bay Area Grant (OBAG 2)

The One Bay Area Grant guides MTC’s distribution of federal transportation funding.

Eligibility Criteria

Criteria for the Housing Incentive Pool grant program include:

  • Newly-constructed units must be deed-restricted for continued affordability to low-, very-low or moderate-income households.
  • Preserved affordable housing units must either be subsidized multifamily properties that have been identified by the California Housing Partnership Corp. as being at high or very-high risk of conversion to market-rate rents, or multifamily properties with affordable-but-unrestricted rents on which new long-term rent restrictions have been placed.
  • A preserved affordable housing unit with deed restrictions running at least 55 years will be counted as one Housing Incentive Pool unit. Units with shorter-term deed restrictions will receive a prorated share of a single Housing Incentive Pool unit based on this 55-year standard.
  • To be eligible for Housing Incentive Pool funding, each city or county must have its overall Housing Element certified by the California Department of Housing and Community Development, and also demonstrate compliance with state housing laws related to surplus lands, accessory dwelling units and density bonuses. Self-certification through a local resolution is allowed to demonstrate compliance with these final three requirements.