Election 2019: Planning and Development Related Results Roundup

Many states and cities around the country voted on November 5, 2019 to decide matters related to the future of the built environment.

Read Time: 3 minutes

November 6, 2019, 11:00 AM PST

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Polling Place

Joe Hall / Flickr

While the big, sweeping hot takes in the wake of yesterday's election have focused on the implications to next year's presidential election, there were a lot of votes flying under the radar with significant implications for states and municipalities. Planetizen has rounded up election results, and we'll keep updating these stories throughout he week as more results come in.

Albuquerque General Obligation Bond (Homeless Shelter Funding)

Voters in Albuquerque approved a $128.5 million general obligation bond that includes $14 million in funding for the city to construct a 24/7 homeless shelter.

Albuquerque Transit Funding Gross Receipts Tax

Voters in Albuquerque approved the extension of a .25 percent gross receipts tax that funds transportation (roads, transit, and trails) in the city. According to an article by Mischa Wanek-Libam, at least 38 percent of that revenue must be dedicated to public transit.

Cincinnati Issue 22 (Bus System Tax)

Voters in Hamilton County approved Issue 22 with more than two-thirds of the vote. Issue 22 both indicates support for repealing a .3 percent earnings tax and clears the way for another vote on a countywide sales tax increase to fund transit. That election would take place in 2020.

Colorado Water Supply

Proposition DD would legalize sports gambling in Colorado and tax the new industry to generate revenue for water infrastructure projects in the state. Proposition DD is running slightly ahead in a vote that is too close to call as of this writing.

Durham Affordable Housing Bond

Voters in Durham, North Carolina overwhelmingly approved a $95 million bond to fund affordable housing projects and programs in the city.

Houston MetroNext

Houston looks like it approved a $3.5 billion bond to fund the MetroNext transit plan, with more than two-thirds of voters supporting he bond referendum with a few ballots left to count. For context, see Planetizen coverage of the bond referendum from earlier this week.(Update: Houston Public Media is reporting that the bond referendum did, in fact, pass.)

Jersey City Airbnb Regulations

Jersey City voters approved stricter regulations for short-term rental companies like Airbnb. The New York Times provides in-depth reporting on the dynamics behind that vote

Lake County, Ohio Transit Funding Sales Tax

Voters in lake County, Ohio approved a .25 percent sales tax increase to raise revenue to fund Laketran public transit services—mostly dial-a-ride services but new corridors designed to improve access to jobs.

San Francisco Proposition A (Affordable Housing Bond)

San Francisco voters narrowly approved Proposition A with the two-thirds vote necessary to approve the bond referendum. The $600 million bond will fund affordable housing projects in the city

San Francisco Proposition D (Ride-Hailing Tax)

San Francisco voters narrowly approved Proposition D, which will implement a new tax on ride-hailing trips on apps like Lyft and Uber. The tax revenue will fund public transit in the city and county of San Francisco.

San Francisco Proposition E (Zoning Approval for Affordable and Workforce Housing)

San Francisco voters overwhelmingly approved Proposition E, which eases the approvals process for affordable housing projects and projects designed to house educators. 

Seattle City Council

The Seattle City Council election was characterized as a battle for the "soul of the city," with public transit, Amazon, and rapid growth very much the subtext for the choices made by voters among the available candidates for a historic number of vacant City Council seats.

Washington State Initiative 976

Washington voters appear to have approved Initiative 976, which will cap car tab fees used to fund transportation in the state at a flat rate of $30. 

November 2018 Results

For a little historical context on planning-related elections, see also the Planetizen roundup of election results from the November 2018 election.


James Brasuell

James Brasuell is a writer and editor, producing web, print, and video content on the subjects of planning, urbanism, and mobility. James has managed all editorial content and direction for Planetizen since 2014 and was promoted to editorial director in 2021.

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