Santa Clara County Local News: Land Use & Development


All Local Land Use & Development News articles contributed by our local media allies and other local newsrooms.

Image caption: The 1965 law known as the Williamson Act has been responsible for keeping about half of California's farmland out of the hands of developers.
The Williamson Act: How the Law That Protects California’s Farmland Works

The Williamson Act, passed in 1965, now keeps more than 16 million acres of farmland out of the hands of developers. Here's how the law puts the brakes on the development of California agricultural properties.

Image caption: Does California’s signature environmental law protect the state’s scenic beauty, or cause more problems than it solves?
CEQA: The Surprising Story of CA’s Key Environmental Law

The California Environmental Quality Act, CEQA, is both the state’s signature environmental legislation, and is also often named as the villain in the state’s housing shortage. But the story may not be that simple.

Image caption: The Baldwin Hills area in South Los Angeles is one region where a state conservancy would keep open land accessible to the public.
California’s 10 State Conservancies: How They Protect Parks and Open Land

How California’s 10 state conservancies buy up open land and shield it from developers to preserve the natural environment for public use.

Image caption: Since 1972, the California Coastal Commission has ruled over the state’s shoreline.
California Coastal Commission: Where It Comes From, What It Does

What is the California Coastal Commission? How one of the state’s most powerful agency protects public access to the state’s scenic coast from Mexico to Oregon.

Image caption: How California reclamation districts turned millions of acres of wetlands into fertile agricultural land, starting in the earliest days of the Gold Rush.
Reclamation Districts: Turning ‘Swamps’ Into Farmland

California has used reclamation districts to turn millions of acres of unusable swamps into fertile agricultural land, starting in the earliest days of the Gold Rush. Here’s how it happened.

Image caption: Zoning laws tell you what you can and can't build on the property you own. How does government get away with that?
How Zoning Laws Shape California and Society

Zoning laws determine what can be built and where. These laws have shaped California, but are they really just tools for social engineering? The history of zoning is closely tied to racial segregation, as well as the state's shortage of …

Gilroy Dispatch logo From Gilroy Dispatch...

05/23/2024
Image for display with article titled Enter Your Coyote Valley Photos in Contest

The Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority this week announced its first Coyote Valley Photo Contest, allowing local residents and photography enthusiasts to share their favorite images of the local natural wonderland.

California Local Pin Marker From CalMatters...

05/23/2024
It’s been almost a half-century since I first heard the term “peripheral canal” uttered by William Gianelli, who was then-Gov. Ronald Reagan’s top water official. The project, in one form or another, had already been kicking around for decades.

Morgan Hill Times logo From Morgan Hill Times...

05/22/2024
Image for display with article titled Conservationists Secure Ranchland for Open Space in Morgan Hill

The Peninsula Open Space Trust recently completed the transfer of 1,908 acres of Lakeside Ranch in Morgan Hill to the Santa Clara Valley Habitat Agency.

San Jose Spotlight logo From San Jose Spotlight...

05/22/2024
Image for display with article titled San Jose Residents Want City to Revisit Community Center Spending

While San Jose works to divvy up a hefty donation from Google, residents want to make sure that money goes back to supporting their communities.

California Local Pin Marker From The Mercury News...

05/21/2024
A proposal was unveiled for dual 28-story towers with 529 units of housing and some retail and a restaurant on East Santa Clara Street in downtown San Jose.

California Local Pin Marker From Palo Alto Online...

05/20/2024
Developer of stalled Palo Alto 63-unit apartment complex on University Avenue resorts to builder's remedy.

San Jose Spotlight logo From San Jose Spotlight...

05/16/2024
Image for display with article titled San Jose Commission Wants to Split Parkland for Commercial Use

Plans for a 40-acre park in San Jose that was previously home to hundreds of homeless residents are shrinking as officials consider other uses for the space.

California Local Pin Marker From The Mercury News...

05/16/2024
In its May 14 meeting, the Cupertino City Council approved its new general plan housing element which mandates the building of 4,588 new homes over the next 10 years.

California Local Pin Marker From Mountain View Voice...

05/16/2024
The City of Mountain View must cover a funding shortfall to build a 120 unit affordable housing project on Bryant Street.

California Local Pin Marker From The Mercury News...

05/16/2024
Plans for a 300 unit residential development on West Julian Street have been filed.

Gilroy Dispatch logo From Gilroy Dispatch...

05/15/2024
Image for display with article titled City Halts Negotiations on Gilroy Gardens Property

The City of Gilroy has halted negotiations with a company that previously showed interest in purchasing the city’s 536-acre property that includes Gilroy Gardens.

San Jose Spotlight logo From San Jose Spotlight...

05/14/2024
Image for display with article titled San Jose Residents Rally Against Affordable Housing Changes

San Jose activists are rallying outside City Hall to protest a plan by officials to divert affordable housing money to shelters and sweeps.

San Jose Spotlight logo From San Jose Spotlight...

05/14/2024
Image for display with article titled ‘Absolutely Stunned’: San Jose Mayor Inflates Costs of Not Sweeping Homeless Camps

State officials are contradicting claims made by San Jose Mayor Matt Mahan in his push to redirect affordable housing money to homeless sweeps and shelters.

California Local Pin Marker From The Mercury News...

05/14/2024
The Santa Clara Valley Water District is proposing a new ordinance banning encampments along local waterways to address increasing negative impacts.

California Local Pin Marker From The Mercury News...

05/14/2024
Preliminary proposals for a rail and transit hub in downtown San Jose adjacent to Diridon Station have been released, with costs of billions of dollars projected.

California Local Pin Marker From Mountain View Voice...

05/14/2024
In its May 13 meeting, the Palo Alto City Council approved $63 million in funding to build a wastewater purification plant adjacent to the Regional Water Quality Control Plant on Embarcadero Way.

San Jose Spotlight logo From San Jose Spotlight...

05/13/2024
Image for display with article titled Campbell Development Will Add Dozens of Homes

A cranny of Campbell is slated for demolition to make way for a larger housing project, leaving some residents and businesses unsure if they will be able to stay in the West Valley city.

California Local Pin Marker From Palo Alto Online...

05/13/2024
The City of Palo Alto is upgrading and building new restroom facilities at four local parks over the next several months.

San Jose Spotlight logo From San Jose Spotlight...

05/11/2024
Image for display with article titled Santa Clara One Step Closer to State Housing Approval

Santa Clara’s housing plans are still out of compliance with the state, but the city hopes its newest draft will be the final effort.

San Jose Spotlight logo From San Jose Spotlight...

05/10/2024
Image for display with article titled San Jose Commissioners Oppose Diverting Housing Funds

San Jose housing commissioners had blistering words for a proposal to divert affordable housing money to shelters and sweeps.

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