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Santa Clara City Observer – July 6, 2016

Santa Clara City Observer

City Place Santa Clara Moves Forward

At its June 28 meeting, the Santa Clara City Council gave Related Companies the go-ahead for the developer’s $6.1 billion largely commercial development project on Tasman Road, where the Santa Clara golf course is currently. The 230-acre project will be developed in eight phases, beginning in 2016.

Last week the Council approved the Environmental Impact Report (EIR), a General Plan amendment changing the land use designation and transportation management plan, a zoning change, the Development Agreement, the Disposition and Development agreement, an ordinance to allow 99-year leases, and a resolution to override the Airport Land Use Commission’s findings of inconsistency with noise policy; saying that noise impacts are limited and can be mitigated.

Most of this information has been available online since the beginning of June, according to Acting City manager Rajeev Batra. There have been nine project study sessions since 2013, when Related first formally proposed the development.


Most of the project (183 acres) of the site was formerly the city dump. Related will be constructing the development on a platform to prevent land settling and movement, and which will seal off the landfill to prevent any toxic seepage. However, California severely restricts housing construction on landfill, so significantly increasing City place residential development currently seems unlikely.

Related will also pay for infrastructure construction, replacement of Fire Station 10, any enhanced police or fire services needed, a multi-modal transit study, and twice the state-set school benefit fee of $3.54/s.f. for residential units.

The Council also adopted a resolution requiring Related to work with the City to find a new location for the PAL BMX track within two years and provide 18 months notice to PAL. The resolution was proposed by Council Member Debi Davis whose husband Bill Davis is a former PAL director.

Mayor Lisa Gillmor and Davis made clear that, for them, failing to find a new BMX location would be a showstopper. Related resisted giving a guarantee and the Council didn’t define the meaning of ‘working together.’

For more information about City Place Santa Clara, visit or the Community Development (formerly Planning) Department page at

Related Companies is the builder of the $46 billion Hudson Place in Manhattan; a joint project with the State and City of New York, is the builder of the $46 billion Hudson Place in Manhattan; often called the largest private development project in U.S. history.

In other business:

Santa Clara Planning Commission meetings will be live streamed on the City website and cable channel 15.

The Council decided to continue to July 19 the 2016-17 agreement with the California Highway Patrol to continue as “double badgers” traffic control services at Levi’s Stadium. The current contract has expired, but there may be outstanding expenses for the recent COPA soccer matches, according to Chief Mike Sellers.

The objection, led by Mayor Lisa Gillmor, was a continuation of the ongoing dispute about stadium public safety costs. There was no public safety plan, alleged Gillmor, and the Council had no idea what the “real” public safety costs are. Council Member Patrick Kolstad said that, for the record, there was a public safety plan as part of the stadium lease that was approved by the Council 7-0, and that the public safety costs have been reviewed, at public meetings.

The Council chose San Francisco-based Harvey M. Rose Associates to perform a comprehensive financial audit of the Stadium Authority finances, and directed that the findings of the audit be reported directly to the Stadium Authority Board – the City Council.

Requescant in Pace

Last week’s Santa Clara City Council’s and Santa Clara Unified School Board’s meetings were adjourned in memory of former City Council Member Joe Kornder.

Kordner, who served on the City Council from 2006 to 2010, was a former SCUSD teacher, principal, coach, Associate Superintendent. He won the California Golden Bell Award twice, was named Administrator of the Year in 1995, and received the PTA Honorary Service Award four times. He also served on the Santa Clara Planning Commission. “He will be greatly missed by many, many people in Santa Clara,” said Council Member Teresa O’Neill, who is a former student of Kornder’s.

Others who have been commemorated in May and June by the City Council include Mrs. R.K, Batra and Dr. Manohar Makker, the mother and father-in-law respectively of City Manager Rajeev Batra; former Cultural Advisory Commissioner P.J. Vaswani; San Jose Police Officer Michael Katherman, and the victims of the Pulse nightclub mass shootings in Orlando.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. (Traditional Requiem mass introit.)


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