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Santa Clara County Land Use & Development Digest

Cupertino Approves Housing Element


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.

Palo Alto Approves Wastewater Plant


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.

Proposals for Transit Hub Unveiled


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.

Homeless Camps Along Creeks and Rivers Targeted


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

Palo Alto Adding Restrooms to Four Local Parks


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

Palo Alto Condos Approved


In their May 6 meeting, the Palo Alto City Council approved a 75-unit condominium complex on San Antonio Road.

San Jose Proposes $120 million Homelessness Spending in Budget


Plans include more tiny home shelters, sanctioned camps, bus tickets out of town.

Ice Skating Complex Proposed for Gilroy


A massive ice sports complex to be operated by the San Jose Sharks is a proposed addition to the Gilroy Sports Park.

"Planned Community" Proposed in Palo Alto


A mixed-use development of 75 condominiums and retail space is being proposed for 800 San Antonio Road in Palo Alto.

Volunteers to Paint Downtown San Jose Mural


Hundreds of volunteers have signed up to participate in painting a mural on San Pedro Street in downtown San Jose.

Palo Alto Grapples with Rail Corridor Redesign


The Palo Alto City Council faces hard choices for the redesign of three crossings of the rail corridor.

New Housing Units Open in San Jose


The 130-unit Solaire Apartments affordable housing complex at 425 Auzerais Avenue in downtown San Jose has opened for occupancy.

Court Ruling Impacts Split Lot Developments


A legal ruling by a Los Angeles judge will impact the ability to build duplexes or triplexes on single-family zoned lots in charter cities such as Mountain View, Palo Alto and Redwood City.

Housing High-Rise Proposed for Downtown San Jose


A 28-story mixed use high-rise has been proposed for downtown San Jose on East Santa Clara Street.

Cupertino Housing Element Approved


The California Department of Housing and Community Development has approved the City of Cupertino’s Housing Element, which outlines the number of units and locations of new housing to be built in the city.

It’s Not Just High-Density—the ‘Builder’s Remedy’ Is Also Bringing More Sprawl


One of the tools in state housing law that’s generated excitement among YIMBYs for its power to build new high-density housing could also end up leading to just the opposite: urban sprawl.

A Private Calif. Ranch Holds Important State History — And It Might Be in Danger


Some residents fear development could destroy parts of the historic land.

Board Votes to Advance Housing Project


The Palo Alto Architectural Review Board voted to approve plans for a four-story apartment building project on University Avenue.

Milpitas Approves Apartments


In its April 16 meeting, the Milpitas City Council approved a development project to build 118 affordable apartment units at 1300 South Main Street.

Palo Alto Submits New Housing Plan


In their April 15 meeting, the Palo Alto City Council approved a proposal for a new Housing Element plan to build 6,086 homes by 2031, to be submitted to the state.

This Map Reveals Where Supersized ‘Builder’s Remedy’ Projects Could Be Coming


Last year, dozens of cities around the Bay Area missed the deadline to come up with a state-approved "housing element" — a plan the state requires cities to submit every eight years showing how they will accommodate their share of the 2.5 million homes that California must build by 2031.

Palo Alto Resubmits Housing Element Plan


After being rejected twice by the California Department of Housing and Community Development, the Palo Alto City Council is set to consider and vote on a new Housing Element plan.

Questions About Teacher Housing Project


The Planning Commission considering a 44 unit Palo Alto teacher housing development in the Ventura neighborhood remains unconvinced as to tenant affordability.

Mountain View Pressing Ahead With Infrastructure Projects


In its annual review of Capital Improvement Projects, the city is considering how to prioritize over 300 planned infrastructure projects in the face of tightening budgets.

Mountain View Considers Increased Density


In its April 9 meeting, the Mountain View City Council considered changes in the R3 zoning regulations to promote housing density and growth in designated areas.

New Affordable Housing Development Planned for San Joes


A San Jose-based modular apartment firm is teaming up with a South Korean real estate company to build 700+ units of affordable housing to a 3.2 acre site at 7 Topgolf Drive in north San Jose.

Homeless Tiny Home Site to Expand


Planning is underway to expand the homeless tiny home facility at 5898 Rue Ferrari in South San Jose with an additional 124 beds, a laundry area and community center.

Los Altos to Raise Fees


The Los Altos City Council approved a new fee schedule for building, engineering and planning services after discovering it had been undercharging by up to $1.9M annually.

Mountain Winery Hotel and Housing Development Proposed


The owners of Mountain Winery are seeking to develop a boutique hotel and 255 units of housing on the Saratoga property.

Santa Clara Faces $624M Infrastructure Deficit


The City of Santa Clara is struggling to maintain aging infrastructure and is now facing $624 million in unfunded repairs and upgrades, according to City Manager Jovan Grogan.

PG&E Outlines Improvements


At a recent breakfast with local business leaders, PG&E executives outlined upcoming projects to improve reliability and increase capacity in the Silicon Valley region.

Los Altos Downtown Improvements Making Progress


Los Altos is making incremental improvements to the downtown with new trash bins, e-bike stations, solar lighting and the introduction of "parklets."


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 is everywhere, but is it a way to regulate development or a tool for social engineering?
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
From its earliest days as a state, California has been trying to turn marshes into productive land.
Since 1972, the California Coastal Commission has ruled over the state’s shoreline.
California Coastal Commission: Where It Comes From, What It Does
How a nuclear plant, a real estate development and an oil spill led to a landmark law.
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
Starting in 1976, the legislature began creating agencies to buy up open land, and keep it open.
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
54-year-old environmental law is often blamed for causing the state’s housing crisis. Is it getting a bad rap?
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
More than half of California farmland is under contracts that prevent its development.
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