Regional Planning

Our goal: Concentrate growth inside existing cities.

SPUR's regional planning agenda:


• Focus housing growth in existing communities.
• Add new jobs in transit-accessible employment centers.
• Retrofit suburban office parks to increase density.
• Strengthen our regional agencies.
• Explore tax sharing.


Read more from SPUR’s Agenda for Change
  • White Paper

    Improving Regional Planning in the Bay Area

    Many attempts have been made to foster better collaboration between the Association of Bay Area Governments and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission. A proposal to establish a merged planning department has again opened up the discussion about the future of regional planning in the Bay Area. SPUR recommends studying a full merger of the two agencies.

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  • Report

    Strengthening the Bay Area's Regional Governance

    The Bay Area economy has rebounded from the recession, but major regional challenges threaten our continued prosperity. SPUR makes the case that some of the biggest threats to the Bay Area’s long-term economic competitiveness are best addressed through better regional governance.

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  • Advocacy Letter

    SPUR’s Comments on Plan Bay Area

    Plan Bay Area is an important step forward in comprehensive regional planning in the Bay Area. Our comments on the plan address the gap between our vision of a more concentrated region and the tools available to achieve it.

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  • Ongoing Initiative

    The Future of Work

    In the last three decades, employment has spread from city centers to car-centric, low-density office parks. How can we move more jobs to places served by transit? SPUR looks at how to make this shift while strengthening innovation, job growth and the prosperity of the Bay Area.

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  • The Urbanist

    The Northern California Megaregion

    Northern California, home to 14 million people, is expected to add at least 10 million people by 2050. How we plan for and accommodate that growth is the defining question for urban planning in Northern California today.

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  • SPUR Report

    Beyond the Tracks

    California cities anticipating the rewards of new high-speed rail stations may fail to reap the full economic and environmental benefits without key land-use planning. SPUR identifies strategies that will contribute to the success of high-speed rail and help realize the full potential of this multi-billion-dollar system.

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  • Find more of SPUR's regional planning research

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Updates and Events

SPUR Comments on Revisions to the Plan Bay Area Regional Growth Framework

Policy Letter May 6, 2019
SPUR strongly supports proposed changes to the regional growth strategy for Plan Bay Area. We support the proposed definition of priority development areas and the proposal to locate growth in areas that are rich in transit, high-quality schools, and other resources that promote economic mobility. SPUR also proposes additional changes to strengthen the framework and its implementation.

SPUR Letter Addresses Oakland's Proposed Public Lands Strategy

Policy Letter April 6, 2019
SPUR believes Oakland should have a comprehensive public lands strategy; we suggest the strategy comply with the Surplus Land Act, develop a clear process and a transparent criteria for evaluating development proposals, increase the affordable units built on public land, and coordinate with other public entities to support mutual goals.

Bay Area Place Types

Urbanist Article March 1, 2019
As part of its ongoing regional strategy work, SPUR has developed 14 place types to provide a tangible portrait of the region.

SPUR Comments on Morgan Hill Urban Service Area Expansion Proposal, 2018

Policy Letter December 4, 2018
Morgan Hill’s proposal runs counter to SPUR and LAFCO’s shared goals of curbing sprawl and preserving agricultural land. The proposal runs contrary to the regional goal of directing growth into higher density in-fill development within existing city boundaries as outlined in Plan Bay Area.

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