Stevens Creek Urban Village
The Stevens Creek Urban Village (SCUV), proposed by the city of San Jose, fundamentally changes the character of our area. It will directly impact residents of West San Jose, Santa Clara and Cupertino, and indirectly impact other nearby cities as well. Get educated and voice your opinions! A local resident has also created another website with additional concerns and links to flyers: www.stevenscreekurbanvillage.com and flyers here.
Santa Clara will consider the impacts during a study session on September 12, 2017. The study session is open to the public and comments can be made. The agenda is posted here. Flyer created by local resident here. Time: 5:30 PM, location: 1500 Warburton Ave., Santa Clara, City Council Chambers.
The three urban village plans were approved by San Jose on August 8, 2017. The agenda was posted here.
On June 27, 2017 the San Jose City Council “delayed” approving the three urban village plans for Stevens Creek Blvd, Winchester and Santana Row. This was very likely due to concerns expressed by the community and neighboring cities regarding unresolved impacts on public services, traffic and general quality of life for the existing residents.
New letters of correspondence from:
- City of Cupertino,
- City of Santa Clara
- US Congress members Ro Khanna and Anna Eshoo have also weighed in with letters to San Jose.
At the Jun 27th meeting, developers’ representatives were present and pressed for approval of the plan, and they will not stop!
Please continue to:
- Support the petition by sharing with neighbors, (http://tiny.cc/NoHighRise-Petition)
- Contact San Jose Councilman Chappie Jones and the city council with your thoughts,
- Contact US Congress member Anna Eshoo’s office if you live in San Jose to request continuing supporting the community’s concerns, as her district covers the urban villages,
- Write to city council members in surrounding communities (Santa Clara, Cupertino),
Major Concerns expressed by community members:
1. Lack of Fit with the existing community - too tall and dense
SCAG and developers recently proposed building heights up to 150 ft in some areas (plus another 10 ft for mechanical). This will result in high-rise 15 story buildings... think Wilshire Blvd. in LA.
Furthermore, Signature projects are not subject to building height limitations, and the plan text says the "Stevens Creek Urban Village must allow for substantial heights above the approved village height if a project provides substantial Urban Village amenities" where "substantial" amenities is not defined (ref. page 176).
This sets a dangerous precedent.
A member of the Santa Clara Planning Department has indicated that there are no buildings higher than 4 stories envisioned on the north side of Stevens Creek Blvd. in the future. 15 story buildings on the San Jose side will create a truly lopsided canyon.
Proposed building height diagram for the Stevens Creek Urban Village
2. Traffic impact
3860 housing units and 4500 workers in the “urban village”, with no mass transit or freeway improvements planned. Plus, Signature projects may not be subject to the same housing unit limitations as they pull from a separate "pool".
“The stretch of Interstate 280 from east San Jose to Cupertino has been named the third worst in the Bay Area for its morning commute from 6:40 to 10:15 a.m., according to a study done by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission.” (Mercury News, October 14, 2016) The Stevens Creek Urban Village lines this stretch of freeway. Entrances at Saratoga and Lawrence Expressway are typically overcrowded.
The impact of Apple Park (Apple Campus 2) and Garden City project (Stevens Creek/Saratoga) is still unknown. Surrounding streets will be jammed – including Kiely Blvd, Pruneridge, Cronin, Woodhams, Lawrence Expressway, San Thomas Expressway, and Winchester Blvd, as this project will add significant amount of traffic to Stevens Creek Blvd.
3. School impacts and overcrowding
Half of the Urban Village is within the Cupertino Union School District boundaries, and feeds to Eisenhower Elementary, Hyde Middle School and Cupertino High School, which are already at capacity.
Eisenhower has 15 portable (temporary) classrooms and Hyde has 5 portable classrooms.
Yet the urban village plan makes no mention of addressing school capacity.
4. Lack of community engagement (or purposefully ignoring their input?).
“Surveys” and “events” had limited reach. Few people heard about them. Did you hear about them?
- The size and scale of the ‘Stevens Creek Urban Village’ concept should be scaled back drastically in keeping with the constraints of the area’s jammed traffic corridors, infrastructure and school capacity.
- The design needs to better fit the suburban character of the area, with real input from the resident community and amenities that are mandated and set aside up front rather than negotiated.
- The so-called ‘Signature’ projects we have seen proposed so far - ‘Garden City’ and ‘Fortbay’ give us great cause for concern. As proposed, they are too dense and large for the area to sustain, and completely out of character for the area. They are not the right example to set for the Stevens Creek corridor.
- The membership of the advisory group (SCAG) and the process followed so far seems to be intended to rubber-stamp what the developers want rather than integrate with the community’s desires and needs.
- The roll out of the SCUV should be delayed until there is an actual mitigation for traffic growth implemented in the area and the impact from other developments in the area (like the new Apple campus and potential Vallco Hills) are better understood.
- SCUV needs to get buy-in from Santa Clara and Cupertino as both Cities are directly impacted.