Fast Company's Adele Peters shares a recent report from San Francisco's chief economist that suggests a solution for bringing down the city's escalating rents: build an extra 100,000 housing units.

The problem? Where to build them. Current city residents aren't interested in future developments that could replace the city's historic architecture. In a new exhibition at the San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association, architecture students explore ideas about where those 100,000 potential units could fit.

After conversations with a city planner, a professor at California College of the Arts led a studio asking students to look at that unused space. "We started talking about underused capacity in the city, and this myth that San Francisco has no place to build and that's why we have a housing crisis," says Christopher Roach, an architect and adjunct professor at CCA. "If you know, for instance, that large sections of Mission Street are zoned for 65 or 85 feet, and you walk by a little one-story shoe shop or auto body repair shop, you're just like, 'Oh my gosh, we could build housing on top of this thing,'" he says.

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