The City Council authorized condominium conversions for the first time since an ordinance restricting such conversion was adopted in 1983. The action, approving the conversion of 13 rental units to condominiums, came as the council unanimously adopted the results of a rental survey showing a 4.1% vacancy rate in April.
The city ordinance prohibits condominium conversion when the rental vacancy rate is below 4%. When the rate exceeds 4%, some conversions must be allowed based on the "vacancy surplus."
In a report to the council Tuesday, city Planning Director Harlan J. Curwick said the vacancy surplus is 13 units out of 13,008 rentals citywide.
Applications from landlords who want to convert units to condominiums will be accepted from Dec. 1 to Jan. 31, and prospective conversion projects will be ranked according to a rating system outlined in the ordinance. That gives points for traffic circulation, the building's architectural design, open space, parking and recreational facilities.
The city's vacancy rate was 3.53% in 1986 and 3.43% in 1985, Curwick said.