The County of Santa Clara
California

Report
98788

Consider recommendations relating to the Stanford University General Use Permit application.

Information

Department:Department of Planning and DevelopmentSponsors:
Category:Land Use

Attachments

  1. Printout
  2. Attachment A - Stanford GUP EIR [Website link]
  3. Attachment B - CEQA Findings [Placeholder]
  4. Attachment C - Water Supply Assessment [Placeholder]
  5. Attachment D - Statement of Overriding Considerations [Placeholder]
  6. Attachment E - Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program [Placeholder]
  7. Attachment F - Stanford Community Plan text and land use map amendments
  8. Attachment G - SCP, Zoning, and GUP Findings
  9. Attachment H - Zoning Ordinance Map Amendments and Draft Ordinance [Placeholder]
  10. Attachment I - Department Recommended GUP Conditions of Approval [Placeholder]
  11. Attachment J - Planning Commission Recommendations & Requests for Analysis [Placeholder]
  12. Attachment K - Stanford's GUP Application Project Description [Placeholder]
  13. Attachment L - Figures
  14. Attachment M - Stanford's Development Agreement Application and Application Clarification Letter
  15. Attachment N - EIR Table 7-4 - Comparison of Impacts of the Proposed Project and Alternatives
  16. Attachment O - April 2018 KMA Nexus Study
  17. Attachment P - Reverse Commute Report [Placeholder]
  18. Attachment Q - Transportation Demand Management Report [Placeholder]
  19. Attachment R - Average Daily Trips Report [Placeholder]
  20. Attachment S - Ordinance Code__5.20.230.___Development_agreements.
  21. Attachment T - HLUET Staff Reports Development Agreement
  22. Attachment U - Stanford DA Offer Letter 1.28.19.docx
  23. Attachment V - DA Final Approved Ground Rules 2.1.19
  24. Attachment W - Stanford DA Offer Letter 6.24.19
  25. Attachment X - County Analysis of Stanford 6.24.19 DA Offer Letter
  26. Attachment Y - Stanford's Framework for Predictability Letter 9.17.19
  27. Attachment Z - Stanford 09.23.19 BOS Letter and Attachments
  28. Attachment AA - First Amendment to the Final EIR [Placeholder]
  29. Attachment BB - BOS Referral Response from 9.24.19
  30. Updated - Attachment G - SCP Zoning and GUP Findings
  31. Updated - Attachment K - Stanford's GUP Application Project Description
  32. Updated-Attachment C - Water Supply Assessment
  33. Updated-Attachment D - Statement of Overriding Considerations
  34. Updated-Attachment B - CEQA Findings
  35. Updated-Attachment E - Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program
  36. Updated-Attachment H - Zoning Ordinance Map Amendments and Draft Ordinance
  37. Updated-Attachment J - Planning Commission Recommendations & Requests for Analysis
  38. Updated-Attachment AA - First Amendment to the Final EIR
  39. Updated-Attachment I - Department Recommended GUP Conditions of Approval
  40. Updated-Attachment P - Reverse Commute Report
  41. Updated-Attachment Q - Transportation Demand Management Report
  42. Updated-Attachment R - Average Daily Trips Report
  43. Stanford GUP-BOS Public Hearing Presentation
  44. 10.08.19 Errata Correction Memo for BOS Meeting
  45. Responses to Requests for Information - Stanford PAUSD Funding
  46. Revised-Responses to Requests for Information - Stanford PAUSD Funding
  47. Memo from President Simitian and Vice President Chavez
  48. Memorandum from Office of the County Executive and Department of Planning and Development relating to Responses to Stanford’s October 21, 2019 Letter
  49. Memorandum from Office of the County Executive and Department of Planning and Development relating to Withdrawal of Stanford GUP Application

Multiple Recommendations

Possible action:
i. Declare intent to certify the Stanford University Final Environmental Impact Report as complete in compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act, as set forth in Attachment A.
ii. Declare intent to adopt the required findings (CEQA Findings - Attachment B) pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act regarding the significant environmental impacts of Alternative A, authorizing up to 2,807 student beds and 2,892 housing units, as set forth in Attachment A.
iii. Declare intent to approve the Water Supply Assessment, as set forth in Attachment C.
iv. Declare intent to adopt the Statement of Overriding Considerations, as set forth in Attachment D.
v. Declare intent to adopt the proposed Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program (MMRP), as set forth in Attachment E.
vi. Declare intent to approve the text amendments and land use map amendments to the Stanford University Community Plan, as set forth in Attachment F, based on findings as set forth in Attachment G.
vii. Declare intent to approve the Zoning Ordinance Map amendments, as set forth in Attachment H, based on findings as set forth in Attachment G.
viii. Declare intent to approve the Administration Recommended Stanford General Use Permit, subject to the Conditions of Approval as set forth in Attachment I, and based on findings as set forth in Attachment G.
ix. Declare intent to deny the Development Agreement Application.
x. Refer to County Counsel to prepare resolutions supporting actions i-ix and to return to the Board for adoption of these resolutions.

The Board of Supervisors is required to make certain findings of fact to approve or deny the subject applications. As the decision-making body, the Board is being asked to review all information in the record, receive public testimony and take action. The required findings of fact for approval of the Community Plan amendments, Zoning Ordinance Map amendments, and the General Use Permit are located in Attachment G. In making a recommendation, the Board shall carefully consider the findings.
The Application submitted by Stanford requests authorization from the County of Santa Clara to construct up to 3,500,000 additional net new square feet of academic/academic support space and student beds, 550 faculty/staff housing units, 40,000 square feet of childcare/trip reducing facilities, and 50,000 square feet of temporary surge space.
The Stanford University General Use Permit Final Environmental Impact Report (EIR) was published by the County in December 2018 and evaluates environmental impacts from the project as proposed by Stanford University in the Application. A complete environmental analysis for Additional Housing Alternatives A and B was also prepared and circulated for public comment by the County, and included in the EIR, to evaluate the environmental impacts of constructing additional housing to accommodate the academic development proposed in the Application. Additional Housing Alternative A evaluated the environmental impacts of constructing an additional 2,549 units/beds above what Stanford proposed in its Application, analyzing a total of 2,892 housing units and 2,807 beds. Additional Housing Alternative B evaluated the environmental impacts of constructing an additional 1,275 units/beds above what Stanford proposed in its Application, analyzing a total of 1,825 housing units and 2,600 beds.
The Administration recommends that the Board adopt Additional Housing Alternative A, and to condition the project to require a minimum of 2,172 housing units and a maximum 2,892 housing units, and a minimum of 2,600 student beds and a maximum of 2,807 student beds. The Administration's recommendation was supported by the Planning Commission when it made a recommendation on the application on June 27, 2019.
The Board may consider and declare its intent to approve Additional Housing Alternative A, the project as applied for by Stanford University, or one of the other alternatives in the EIR. If the Board intends to approve the project as applied for by Stanford University or one of the other alternatives evaluated in the EIR, the Administration would return to the Board with a revised set of Conditions of Approval, CEQA findings, and General Use Permit findings to reflect the Board's intent.

Body


PLANNING COMMISSION RECOMMENDATIONS

On June 27, 2019, the Planning Commission approved forwarding the Administration’s recommendations on the items above with specific changes to the Conditions of Approval and requests for additional analysis. The Planning Commission approved the items on a 7-0 vote except for item “i” (denial of the Development Agreement Application), which was approved on a 6-1 vote. Attachment J identifies the Planning Commission’s recommended changes to the Conditions of Approval and requests for additional analysis, as well as provides the Administration’s responses. 

REASONS FOR RECOMMENDATION

The matter before the Board of Supervisors is several approvals and actions related to Stanford University’s General Use Permit (GUP) application, including:

 

·        Certification of Environmental Impact Report and approval of the Water Supply Assessment

·        Adoption of the Statement of Overriding Considerations

·        Adoption of the Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program

·        Approval of Stanford University Community Plan amendments

·        Approval of Zoning Map amendments

·        Approval of General Use Permit, subject to Conditions of Approval

·        Denial of Development Agreement application

 

Executive Summary

Stanford University’s GUP Application is the largest development application in the County’s history – 3.5 million square feet of new academic/academic support space and student beds as well as 550 faculty/staff housing units. This proposal would increase the total development building area on the Campus to 20,400,000 square feet. The Stanford Application is significant and unique in unincorporated Santa Clara County in terms of the amount of development, the size of the land area and integrated nature of the land uses, the extended timeframe of its implementation, and the project’s environmental impacts affecting the surrounding area and the region.

 

The Stanford GUP proposal addresses approximately 4,017 acres of Stanford University lands in unincorporated Santa Clara County located adjacent to the Cities of Palo Alto and Menlo Park, the Towns of Woodside and Portola Valley, and unincorporated areas of San Mateo County. This includes the main Stanford campus area located generally north of Junipero Serra Boulevard (1,724 acres) and the largely undeveloped Stanford foothills located generally south of Junipero Serra Boulevard (2,293 acres). It does not include other Stanford lands located in adjacent jurisdictions. No other entity under the County’s jurisdiction has a General Use Permit.

 

Community Plan Amendments

The existing Stanford Community Plan (SCP) provides a strong policy framework to ensure that the University’s proposed growth does not negatively impact the surrounding communities. The Administration provides recommended amendments to the Community Plan, based on County ordinances and policies and Board direction, and general updates to bring the SCP up-to-date with current conditions. These updated Community Plan policies, considered for adoption in tandem with the proposed General Use Permit, address updates to background text and figures to reflect current information and updates to policies and implementation measures to reflect current conditions. The recommended Conditions of Approval for the GUP are consistent with these Stanford Community Plan amendments.

 

General Use Permit

The Administration is recommending that the Board of Supervisors approve the General Use Permit for Stanford, as modified by the Conditions of Approval. These modifications to the General Use Permit would, among other things, require Stanford to:

 

·        Provide a minimum of 2,172 Housing Units to meet housing demand associated with the proposed development of 3.5 million square feet of new academic and academic support space/student beds at the campus;

·        Ensure that ongoing development at Stanford avoids worsening traffic congestion in the region by adhering to the No Net New Commute Trips (NNNCT) standard, in addition to standards minimizing new reverse commute traffic and average daily trips (ADT), subject to monitoring and enforcement;

·        Limit growth in on-campus parking, consistent with the proposed requirements for reduction of automobile trips;

·        Preserve open space and natural resources by focusing new development within the Academic Growth Boundary (AGB) and limiting development outside the AGB;

·        Obtain phased authorization of development within the General Use Permit;

·        Fund a Municipal Services Study to identify service needs of the community at Stanford, and provide for those services as determined by the Board;

·        Fund an updated El Camino Real Frontage Plan for Stanford lands along the south side of El Camino Real to identify standards for future development; and,

·        Prepare and implement an updated Master Drainage Plan to achieve a storm drain system that avoids increases in frequency, severity, or lateral extent of flooding in San Francisquito and Matadero Creeks.

 

Development Agreement Application

The County and Stanford met on November 30, 2018 to establish ground rules for the negotiations, and ground rules were approved by both parties on February 1, 2019. Stanford submitted the first of two offer letters on January 28, 2019. Analysis of this offer letter and the second letter is provided in the Development Agreement Ordinance section of this report.

 

Negotiations were suspended on April 15, 2019 due to Stanford’s violation of the ground rules.

 

On June 27, 2019, the Planning Commission approved staff’s recommendations to deny Stanford’s development agreement application. Just prior to the Planning Commission’s deliberations, Stanford submitted a second (June 24, 2019) offer letter that County staff analyzed for the value of the benefits, which was determined to be 3.6% of the $4.7 billion cited in Stanford’s offer letter, and identified the housing and traffic concessions Stanford seeks in exchange. These concessions would impair the County’s ability to avoid worsening the housing crisis and traffic congestion. County staff’s analysis was presented to the Planning Commission before its action on the GUP application at its June 27, 2019 meeting.

 

On September 17, 2019, Stanford issued a letter to the Ad Hoc Development Agreement Committee that continued to request to negotiate the entire set of conditions of approval; in particular, to reduce the number of market rate and affordable units required and to weaken the recommended traffic conditions. In County staff’s analysis, Stanford seeks to reduce the total number of required housing units by 40% (1,308 versus the staff-recommended 2,172 units). Stanford also continues to seek repeal of the Stanford housing ordinances and questions the County’s authority to impose these requirements. Stanford also requests to roll back the traffic conditions to the 2000 GUP standard. This letter was reissued to the full Board on September 23, 2019.

 

County staff concluded that Stanford’s two offer letters contained benefits that were not true community benefits, and that the remaining actual benefits were insufficient and that the requested concessions could impair the County’s ability to make the necessary findings that protect the community from the impacts of the proposed GUP development and enable staff to recommend approval of the GUP. Because there is no development agreement before the Board for its consideration, staff recommends that the Board declare its intent to deny the development agreement application.

 

In summary, the staff recommendation to the Board of Supervisors is to approve the authorization of Stanford University’s application for 3.5 million square feet of academic/academic support space and student beds (and other components) and to take the following actions:

 

a.      Declare intent to certify the Stanford University Final Environmental Impact Report as complete in compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act, as set forth in Attachment A;

b.     Declare intent to adopt the required findings (CEQA Findings – Attachment B) pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act regarding the significant environmental impacts of Alternative A, authorizing up to 2,807 student beds and 2,892 housing units, as set forth in Attachment A;

c.      Declare intent to approve the Water Supply Assessment, as set forth in Attachment C;

d.     Declare intent to adopt the Statement of Overriding Considerations, as set forth in Attachment D;

e.      Declare intent to adopt the proposed Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program (MMRP), as set forth in Attachment E;

f.       Declare intent to approve the text amendments and land use map amendments to the Stanford University Community Plan, as set forth in Attachment F, based on findings as set forth in Attachment G;

g.     Declare intent to approve the Zoning Ordinance Map amendments, as set forth in Attachment H, based on findings as set forth in Attachment G;

h.     Declare intent to approve the Administration Recommended Stanford General Use Permit, subject to the Conditions of Approval as set forth in Attachment I, and based on findings as set forth in Attachment G;

i.       Declare intent to deny the Development Agreement Application; and

j.       Refer to County Counsel to prepare resolutions supporting actions (a)-(i) and to return to the Board for adoption of these resolutions.

 

Administration’s Recommendations

Nineteen years ago, when the Board of Supervisors approved the 2000 Stanford GUP, as modified by Conditions of Approval, and adopted a Community Plan – innovative Growth and Development, Housing, Circulation, and other pioneering strategies were incorporated to effectively address impacts from proposed development in the Community Plan Area.

 

The Housing Linkage Policy, for example, that linked the construction of housing with development of academic space, based on a ratio of one housing unit per 826 gross square feet of academic space as set forth in the 2000 Stanford Community Plan established a new standard, along with the other housing strategies, in addressing the supply and affordability of housing in a region that already had a significant jobs-housing imbalance. The 2000 GUP and Community Plan have served both Stanford University and the surrounding communities well during these past 19 years and continue to be strong foundations for guiding future development.

 

The Stanford proposal, if approved, would result in an additional 3.5 million square feet of new academic and academic support space/student beds, increasing the total development building area by 20% and increasing the campus population by 9,610. Since adoption of the 2000 Stanford Community Plan and GUP, housing affordability has worsened in Santa Clara County to the point of crisis, which is most acute in the communities and neighborhoods surrounding Stanford University.

 

Currently, there are 3.49 jobs for every housing unit in Palo Alto, the worst imbalance of cities in Santa Clara County,[1] and the median home value is over $3 million. The construction of over 3.5 million square feet of new development by Stanford would intensify demand for housing in this area as 5,556 new workers (or 4,010 net new workers) who are either directly employed by Stanford or provide services to the Stanford community seek housing in the area. Recognizing both the existing housing affordability crisis in the Stanford area and the acute housing impacts associated with Stanford’s additional growth, the Administration is recommending Conditions of Approval for the Stanford GUP requiring that the University provide a minimum of 2,172 housing units (or payment of in-lieu affordable housing fees) to fully meet the demand created from its ongoing growth.

 

Correspondingly, the Community Plan and the Administration’s recommended Conditions of Approval also provide foundational policies and requirements regarding traffic management associated with Stanford Campus development. The 2000 GUP contains conditions requiring that Stanford adhere to a No Net New Commute Trip standard to avoid worsening congestion in surrounding neighborhoods and communities. The recommended Conditions of Approval for Stanford recognize that traffic congestion has continued to worsen in the neighborhoods and the area surrounding Stanford University.

 

The recommended Conditions of Approval thus require Stanford to adhere to the No Net New Commute Trip standard and require ongoing traffic management and monitoring in additional traffic control measures, including Reverse Commute Trips and Average Daily Trips – two types of traffic that could substantially worsen congestion in the surrounding areas. In addition, given the worsening congestion on roads surrounding Stanford, the conditions mandate that ongoing development at Stanford could be suspended following a public hearing process if Stanford does not adhere to the traffic or housing Conditions of Approval.

 

The Comparison Table, below, compares Stanford’s proposal as set forth in its application with the Administration’s recommendations.


Comparison Table
Stanford’s Proposal and Administration Recommendations

Project Item

Stanford’s Proposal

Administration Recommendation

Faculty/Staff Housing Units -TOTALS

550 faculty/staff units

Minimum of 2,172 units

Maximum of 2,892 units

·         Faculty/Staff Housing; Market Rate Units

550 faculty/staff units

Minimum of 1,041 units

Maximum of 1,646 units

·         Faculty/Staff Housing; Affordable Units

Pay $20 per square foot in- lieu fees

Min. 933 mitigation units

Min. 198 inclusionary units

1,131 Total

Student Housing - TOTALS

2,600 student beds

Min. 2,600 beds

Max. 2,807 beds

·         Undergraduate Beds

1,700 beds

Min. 1,700 beds

·         Grad. Student Beds

900 beds

Min. 900 beds

·         Affordable Student Housing

Half of the graduate student beds to meet Housing Element affordability requirements

The matter of counting graduate student beds as affordable will be reconsidered during the next update of the County’s Housing Element in approx. 2022 - 2023

Traffic

Continue No Net New Commute Trips (NNNCT) standard

Continue NNNCT and add:

·         Peak 3-hour Periods

·         Reverse Commute Trips

·         Average Daily Trips

Traffic Exceedance

Pay a portion of the fair share fees for intersection improvements (based on a per trip over the limit fee basis)

Pay fair share fees for intersection improvements plus suspend development following the procedures set forth in the Conditions of Approval

Parking

Allow up to 1,480 net new spaces plus a 2,000 space “parking reserve”

Allow up to 1,480 net new spaces. No “parking reserve”

Open Space

No change to existing policy for 4/5ths vote to modify AGB, which expires in 2025

Extend policy for 4/5ths vote of the Board of Supervisors to modify AGB to 99 years; to expire in 2118

Community Plan Changes

Change the golf Driving Range site from Medium Density Residential to Academic Campus and other minor changes in the San Juan District

Accept Stanford’s request and update maximum academic development from 17.3M to 20.4M square feet.

Update background text, figures, policies, and implementation plans to reflect current conditions.

Zoning Changes

Change the golf Driving Range site from R3S to A1 and other minor changes in the San Juan District

Accept Stanford’s request and create and apply a new Campus Open Space zoning district to the existing campus open space areas consistent with the Community Plan


The Administration is recommending approval of the GUP with the Conditions of Approval requiring Stanford to build a minimum of 2,172 housing units (and a maximum of 2,892 units) to address the housing demand associated with the construction of 3.5 million new square feet of development.

 

The environmental impacts of constructing this additional housing were fully evaluated as Alternative A within the Stanford GUP Environmental Impact Report (EIR) prepared for the project. The EIR discloses that construction of Alternative A would have more significant environmental impacts than the proposed GUP application submitted by Stanford. Specifically, the EIR discloses that the construction of this additional housing would have additional significant environmental impacts related to air quality emissions and traffic impacts. These additional environmental impacts are related to potential additional traffic and construction activity associated with the additional housing units and on-site residents at Stanford University.

 

Despite the potential for these additional environmental impacts, the Administration is recommending the Board of Supervisors approve the GUP and adopt the Conditions of Approval requiring the construction (or payment of in-lieu affordable housing fees) of at least 2,172 housing units to ensure that Stanford fully addresses housing demand from construction of an additional 3.5 million square feet of development. If the County does not require Stanford to provide sufficient housing to address housing demand, ongoing development at Stanford would exacerbate the housing affordability crisis that acutely impacts the areas around the University.

 

Resulting impacts would include an increase in the percentage of families living in substandard housing and longer commute times as workers are compelled to find affordable housing outside of the region. This deficiency in housing and decrease in affordability worsens social inequity throughout the region, creating more displacement and socio-economic fragmentation in local communities. The need to address these broader socio-economic impacts by ensuring that Stanford fully mitigates the housing impacts of its increased development outweighs the significance of the additional environmental impacts disclosed within the EIR.

 

I.                                                                                                                                        PROJECT DESCRIPTION – STANFORD’S PROPOSED PROJECT

Stanford’s proposed project consists of an application by Stanford University for a new General Use Permit (GUP) and associated amendments to the Stanford Community Plan and Zoning Map to authorize new development of academic, housing, and other associated uses on the Stanford campus to meet the University’s facility needs through the year 2035, and an application by Stanford for a Development Agreement.

 

Additional project approvals, not a part of Stanford’s application, include Amendments to the Stanford University Community Plan proposed by the Administration, and a Water Supply Assessment required for the project pursuant to State law. Each of these project elements is summarized below.

 

A.   Stanford University General Use Permit Application

Stanford’s GUP Application seeks programmatic authorization of specified levels of academic, housing, and support uses within the Stanford University Campus located within unincorporated Santa Clara County, subject to site-specific approvals at the time each individual building project is proposed. The GUP Application is intended to replace the approved 2000 General Use Permit (2000 GUP). The GUP Application also requests specific provisions in regard to housing, transportation, and parking and makes commitments regarding safe routes to school improvements, sustainability programs, and off-site park maintenance. These requests are summarized below. The GUP Application Project Description is included as Attachment K to this report.


Requested GUP Development

Table 1 summarizes development proposed in Stanford’s GUP Application and the remaining authorized, but-not-yet-constructed, development from the 2000 GUP.

 

Table 1. Stanford’s Proposed Uses and Development Levels

Development Type

Proposed|
GUP

Proposed Carry-Over from 2000 GUP

Total Proposed

Academic/ Support

2,275,000 sf

185,717[2]

2,460,717 sf

Student Beds

2,600

N/A

2,600

Faculty/Staff Housing Units

550

N/A

550

Childcare Space/Trip Reduction Uses

40,000 sf

N/A

40,000 sf

Temporary Construction Surge Space (Trailers)

50,000 sf at a time

N/A

50,000 sf at a time

Development Outside AGB

0

N/A

0

Parking

2,000 space reserve[3]

1,352 spaces[4]

3,352 spaces

 

The GUP Application proposes the distribution of this new academic/academic support space and housing by development districts similar to those used in the 2000 GUP (with minor changes) and includes a process for shifting development between districts subject to County review and approval. 

 

Stanford’s Proposed GUP Provisions and Commitments

The Stanford GUP Application proposes the following provisions regarding housing, transportation, and parking and commitments regarding safe routes to school improvements, sustainable development, and public park upgrades.

 

·        Housing Linkage – Construction of housing in tandem with construction of academic space based on the ratio specified in the 2000 GUP: one (1) housing unit/826 gross square feet (g.s.f.) of academic space.

·        Affordable Housing – Provision of 450 graduate student housing units that meet the requirements for Moderate Income residents, and payment of affordable housing fees at a rate of $20 per square foot of net new academic space.

·        Transportation – Continuation of the No Net New Commute Trips (NNNCT) standard with proposed changes to implementation details of NNNCT monitoring and traffic mitigation, including provision for payment of a portion of the fair share fees for intersection improvements (based on a per trip over the limit fee basis)

·        Parking – Addition of a 2,000-space parking reserve (that can be activated with Planning Commission approval) to the 21,651-space parking cap established by the 2000 GUP and exclusion of certain types of parking from the parking count.

·        Safe Routes to SchoolImprovements of pedestrian facilities on Stanford lands in and around Nixon and Escondido Elementary Schools, such as, new or enhanced crosswalks and signage.

·        Sustainable Development – Commitments regarding air quality standards for construction equipment, electrification of Stanford buildings and vehicles, and low water landscaping.

·        Parking Improvements – Funding ($375,000) of public park renovations in Palo Alto parks.

 


B.    Land Use Map and Zoning Map Amendments - Proposed by Stanford

Stanford proposes to amend the Stanford University Community Plan (SCP) Land Use Map and the Zoning Map designations for the driving range and nine housing sites. The existing and proposed land use designations and zoning districts are summarized in Table 2. The proposed land use designations are shown in Figures 1 and 2 of Attachment L and the proposed zoning districts are shown in Figures 3 and 4 of Attachment L.

 

Table 2.  Stanford’s Proposed SCP Land Use Map and Zoning Map Amendments

 

Location

Community Plan Land Use Map Amendments

Zoning Map Amendments

Existing Designation

Proposed Designation

Existing Designation

Proposed Designation

Driving Range Site

Campus Residential – Medium Density

Academic Campus

R3S –

Medium Density Campus Residential

A1 – General Use

Faculty House Sites

Academic Campus

Campus Residential

– Low Density

A1 General Use

R1S Low

Density Campus Residential

 

C.               Stanford Community Plan Text Amendments Proposed by Stanford

Stanford proposes minor changes to the text of the Stanford Community Plan (SCP) Housing Chapter that would generally remove information identifying specific housing sites and instead refer to the housing site information in the General Plan Housing Element 2015-2022. These amendments, with revisions shown in underline and strike out, are provided in Stanford’s GUP Application (Attachment K).

 

D.   Development Agreement Application

Stanford University submitted a development agreement application on July 27, 2018 (Attachment M). The application was deemed complete by the Department on October 17, 2018. The status of the negotiation process is described in section VII of this report.

 

E.              Water Supply Assessment

Senate Bill 610 (SB 610) requires the preparation of a Water Supply Assessment (WSA) for certain large-scale development projects, such as, the subject Stanford project, that require an EIR. The WSA is required to include a discussion of whether the total projected water supplies, determined to be available for the project during normal, single dry, and multiple dry water years during a 20-year projection, will meet the projected water demand associated with the proposed project.

 

Since there is no “public water system” serving the Stanford campus, the County, as the CEQA Lead Agency for the project Environmental Impact Report (EIR), is the approving jurisdiction for WSAs for the proposed project and Housing Alternatives A and B.[5] The WSAs were prepared by Stanford University and its consultant, peer reviewed by the County’s consultant, and were determined by the County to adequately assess water supply availability. The WSAs are located in the Appendices to the EIR (Appendix WSA and ALT WSA) and the most recently updated WSA is included as Attachment C.

 

In response to comments raised during the Planning Commission’s consideration of the GUP application relating to the State Water Resources Control Board’s amendments to the Bay Delta Water Quality Control Plan, the WSA has been updated. The revisions conclude that despite potential water supply reductions during extended droughts, sufficient water supplies will be available to serve the Stanford Campus under the two housing alternatives because (a) Stanford curtails water use during extended droughts; and (b) Stanford has the ability to meet its potable water needs during an extended drought through use of groundwater. County staff has determined, based on the entire record, that projected water supplies will be sufficient to satisfy the demands of the Administration Recommended GUP, in addition to existing and planned future uses.

 

II.              ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT REPORT

The Stanford University General Use Permit Environmental Impact Report (EIR)[6] has been prepared and processed in conformance with the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and the CEQA Guidelines to disclose the significant environmental effects of the proposed project and project alternatives. The Draft EIR was circulated for public review in October 2017. In June 2018, in response to public comments on the Draft EIR, the County revised and circulated for public review Recirculated Portions of the Draft EIR. In December 2018, the County released the Final EIR, which integrates the Draft EIR and Recirculated Portions of the Draft EIR into a single document that includes public comments, responses to those comments and revisions to the Draft EIR.[7]

 

The Recirculated EIR included a full analysis of the environmental impacts of Additional Housing Alternative A, which assumes the addition of housing to the proposed project sufficient to meet the full housing demand generated by Stanford’s GUP Applicationup to 5,699 housing units/student beds. The public was provided an opportunity to comment on Alternative A and its impacts when the Draft EIR was recirculated, and the Final EIR responded to public comments received on Alternative A and its impacts.

 

The Administration is recommending adoption of the GUP with the Conditions of Approval requiring Stanford to provide 2,172 housing units (including payment of in-lieu affordable housing fees) to address the housing demand associated with the construction of 3.5 million new square feet of development. The environmental impacts of constructing this additional housing were fully evaluated under Housing Alternative A. The EIR discloses that construction of Alternative A would have more significant environmental impacts than the proposed GUP application submitted by Stanford. (See Attachment N for a summary of the environmental impacts of Alternative A as compared to the project.)

 

Specifically, the EIR discloses that the construction of this additional housing would have additional significant environmental impacts related to air quality emissions and traffic impacts. These additional environmental impacts are related to potential additional traffic and construction activity associated with the additional housing units and on-site residents at Stanford University. Despite the potential for these additional environmental impacts, the Administration is recommending the Board of Supervisors adopt the Conditions of Approval requiring the construction of 2,172 housing units to ensure that Stanford fully addresses housing demand from construction of an additional 3.5 million square feet of development.

 

If the County does not require Stanford to provide sufficient housing to address housing demand, ongoing development at Stanford would exacerbate the housing affordability crisis that acutely impacts the areas around the University. Resulting impacts would include an increase in the percentage of families living in substandard housing and longer commute times as workers are compelled to find affordable housing outside of the region. This deficiency in housing and decrease in affordability worsens social inequity throughout the region, creating more displacement and socio-economic fragmentation in local communities. The need to address these broader socio-economic impacts by ensuring that Stanford fully mitigates the housing impacts of its increased development outweighs the significance of the additional environmental impacts disclosed within the EIR.

 

In order to approve the GUP as recommended, the Board of Supervisors will need to adopt findings regarding the significant environmental impacts of Alternative A, including a Statement of Overriding Considerations explaining the reasons for approval of Alternative A, despite its significant environmental impacts. Draft CEQA findings are included as Attachment B and a draft Statement of Overriding Considerations is included as Attachment D to this report.

 

III.               ADMINISTRATION RECOMMENDATIONS - GENERAL USE PERMIT

The Administration recommends that the Board of Supervisors approve the proposed General Use Permit for Stanford University, subject to the Conditions of Approval prepared by the Administration. The Conditions of Approval are intended to implement the Stanford Community Plan policies and minimize the potential socio-economic and environmental impacts from the development of 3.5 million square feet of new building area as proposed under the Stanford GUP. The Conditions of Approval are included as Attachment I. The findings to support the Conditions of Approval are set forth in Attachment G. Key areas addressed by the Conditions of Approval are:

 

A.   Housing and Affordable Housing

B.    Traffic and Transportation

 

A.              Housing and Affordable Housing Recommendations

Since adoption of the 2000 Stanford Community Plan and GUP, housing availability and affordability have worsened in Santa Clara County to the point of crisis. During the continued economic expansion that has occurred since the Great Recession ended in 2010, the Bay Area has added 722,000 jobs, but constructed only 106,000 housing units, exacerbating a long-term imbalance between jobs and housing.[8] Furthermore, from 2010 to 2019, the population of Santa Clara County increased 9.7% (from 1,781,642 to 1,954,286), but the number of housing units only increased 6.25% (from 631,920 to 671,439).[9] This imbalance significantly impacts housing availability and affordability.

 

Because of the shortage of affordable housing units in Santa Clara County, many households overpay for housing. According to the 2015-2023 Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) determined by the Association of Bay Area Governments, Santa Clara County had a total housing need of 58,836 units through 2023, which included the need to add 10,636 new Moderate Income, 9,542 new Low-Income units, and 16,158 Very Low-Income units within Santa Clara County. Although the current RHNA cycle is more than halfway over, only 48% of the allocated units across all income levels have been completed countywide. The percentage of allocated units countywide that have been completed is progressively worse at the lower the income level: 23% of moderate-income units completed to date; 13% of low-income units; and 10% of very low-income units.

 

The Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies found that only 22.3% of all households in the San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara metropolitan area (which includes the City of Palo Alto and Stanford University) could afford the typical monthly payments for a median-priced home.

 

According to the National Low-Income Housing Coalition’s Out of Reach 2018 study, the San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara HUD Metropolitan Fair Market Rent Area is the second most expensive metropolitan rental market in the United States. As result, tens of thousands of people in Santa Clara County are ill-housed or homeless. The severe housing shortage in the Bay Area has reached crisis proportions.

 

The housing supply and affordability concerns in Santa Clara County are the most acute around Stanford University due to the high housing prices in the area and the employment opportunities generated by Stanford. Currently, there are 3.49 jobs for every housing unit in Palo Alto, the worst imbalance of cities in Santa Clara County, followed by Mountain View where there are 2.37 jobs for every housing unit.[10]

 

Proposed GUP Housing Deficit

Stanford’s proposed construction of 3,500,000 square feet of academic and academic support space/student beds and 550 faculty/staff housing units would substantially increase housing demand without providing the commensurate level of housing needed. The Stanford GUP Application estimates that buildout of the academic space would add 5,556 employees including:

 

·        2,438 staff,

·        789 faculty,

·        961 postdoctoral scholars,

·        57 janitors,

·        72 third-party contract workers,

·        966 casual and temporary workers, and

·        273 contingent workers.

 

In response to comments submitted on the Draft Environmental Impact Report regarding impacts associated with the increase in the employees at Stanford and traffic impacts, the County prepared an Alternative to the Draft Environmental Impact Report evaluating the environmental impacts of providing full housing (Additional Housing Alternative A).

 

The County’s Affordable Housing Nexus Studies indicate that both development of academic space and new residential units on the Stanford Campus directly and indirectly create new jobs, including service workers who require affordable housing. Because affordable housing is in short supply in the Stanford Community Plan Area and environs, these workers are forced to pay a disproportionate share of their incomes for housing, live in substandard housing conditions, or commute long distances to the Stanford area from more affordable areas outside of the region.

 

The Affordable Housing Nexus Analysis Addendum for Stanford University Campus prepared for the County in April 2018 by Keyser Marston Associates (KMA), which is Attachment O to this report, estimates the housing demand associated with the additional workforce created by Stanford’s new academic space and new residential development. For academic space, the affordable housing demand is associated with workers who work within or provide support services to the new academic space uses. For new residential development of faculty and staff housing, the affordable housing demand is associated with the workforce that provides services to residents.

 


The Nexus Analysis Addendum indicates the proposed GUP development would result in 4,010[11] net new workers and a demand for 2,172 new housing units, including 964 housing units affordable to workers with incomes between 0% and 120% of the Area Median Income (AMI) (Table 3). The construction of over 3.5 million square feet of new development by Stanford would intensify demand for housing in this area as new workers who are either directly employed by Stanford or provide services to the Stanford community seek housing in the area.  If unmet, this additional housing demand has the potential to exacerbate the existing severe housing shortage in the areas surrounding Stanford University. 

 

Table 3. Housing Demand

Housing Category

Number Units

Market Rate Housing

1,208

Below Market Rate Housing

·        Moderate Income

389

·        Low Income

429

·        Very Low Income

108

·    Extremely Low Income

38

Subtotal

964[12]

Total Units

2,172

 

Housing Impact Mitigation Fee Ordinance and Inclusionary Housing Ordinance

In September 2018, the Board of Supervisors adopted the Housing Impact Mitigation Fee Ordinance and the Inclusionary Housing Ordinance to mitigate for future impacts on affordable housing within the Stanford Community Plan Area. The Ordinances were based on the affordable housing needs identified by the Affordable Housing Nexus Analysis Addendum (Nexus Addendum). The Housing Impact Mitigation Fee Ordinance establishes a mitigation fee, operative as of July 1, 2019, of $36.22 per square foot of academic development in the first year and a $68.50 fee in the second year and thereafter.

 

The Housing Impact Mitigation Fee Ordinance allows an applicant, including Stanford, to obtain fee credit if the applicant chooses to construct affordable units, based on the fee rate in effect at the time. After the first year, the $68.50 fee would mitigate approximately half of the affordable housing demand generated from future development of academic space within the Stanford Community Plan Area.

 

The Inclusionary Housing Zoning Ordinance requires 16% of all market rate housing units constructed within the Community Plan Area to be below market-rate. For rental units:

·        15% must be affordable to low- or very low-income households,

·        45% to low-income households, and

·        40% to moderate income households.

 

For-sale units must be affordable to moderate income households, which include households earning up to 120% of the area median income. The two Ordinances were operative on July 1, 2019 and will apply to Stanford development under the proposed GUP. The Mitigation Fee Ordinance and Inclusionary Housing Ordinance address future affordable housing demands.

 

Recommended Conditions of Approval

The construction of over 3.5 million square feet of new development by Stanford would intensify demand for housing in this area as new workers who are either directly employed by Stanford or provide services to the Stanford community seek housing in the area. Recognizing both the existing housing affordability crisis in the Stanford area and the acute housing impacts associated with Stanford’s additional growth, the Administration is recommending Conditions of Approval for the Stanford GUP that require the University to provide sufficient housing units to fully off-set the demand created by its proposed growth, including both market-rate and below market-rate (BMR) housing.

 

The Administration recommends the following housing requirements:

 

·        Minimum Required Housing.  Require Stanford to address all of the market-rate housing and affordable housing demand resulting from the buildout of 3.5 million square feet of development, a total of 2,172 housing units and 2,600 student beds. This requirement reflects 100% of estimated demand from the Nexus Analysis Addendum, adjusted downward slightly to eliminate overlap in demand associated with the inclusionary ordinance and the academic space affordable housing mitigation impact fee. The 2,600 student beds equal the number of beds proposed by Stanford in the GUP application. (See Table 4)

 

·        Minimum BMR UnitsTo Off-Set Demand for Academic DevelopmentConsistent with the Housing Impact Fee Mitigation Ordinance, require Stanford to pay mitigation fees or receive fee credit for construction of deed-restricted (for a minimum of 55 years) below market-rate units based on fee rates in effect at that time. Because the current mitigation fees address approximately half of the affordable housing demand, allow fee payment for no more than 60% of the required below market-rate units (i.e., 560 units of the total 933 units). Require construction of the remaining 40% (373 units).

 

·        Minimum Inclusionary UnitsTo Off-Set Demand for Housing Development.  Consistent with the Inclusionary Housing Ordinance, require Stanford to construct 16% of the required market-rate units as deed-restricted[13] units that meet the specified affordability requirements (a minimum of 198 units). Require 100% of the market-rate and inclusionary housing units to be constructed (1,239 units).

 

·        On-Campus Housing.  Require a minimum of 70% of the constructed housing units to be located on the Stanford campus (a minimum of 1,128 housing units). Require 100% of the required minimum 2,600 student beds to be located on the campus.

 

·        Off-Campus Housing.  Require 30% of new housing constructed off the campus to be located within a six-mile radius of the campus, unless an exception is granted by the Planning Commission based on a preponderance of evidence demonstrating that it is infeasible to construct within a six-mile radius due to inadequate housing sites.

 

·        Maximum Allowed Housing.  Allow Stanford to construct more housing than is requiredup to 2,892 housing units and 2,807 student beds (1,225,000 square feet).  The proposed maximums are consistent with the housing assumptions for Housing Alternative A, which were fully addressed in the EIR.

 

·        Housing Linkage.  Require Stanford to provide housing concurrent with construction of new academic facilities based on the linkage benchmarks for each Development Phase in conformance with Table 5. Verify compliance annually for Phases 1-3 and prior to authorization of the next phase. For Phase 4, verify compliance annually.


Table 4. Housing Recommendations

Housing

Minimum Required

Maximum Allowed

Housing Location

Faculty/Staff Housing Units

Market-Rate and 16% Inclusionary Units

 

1,239[14]

 

1,959

Construct a minimum of 70% of all units (by income category) on campus.

Below Market-Rate Units by Income Category

 

 

 

Moderate Income

347

N/A

 

A minimum of 70% of constructed units by income category shall be located on campus.

Low Income

381

N/A

Very Low Income

133

N/A

Extremely Low Income

72

N/A

Below Market-Rate Units All Income Categories

 

933

 

N/A

Subtotal

2,172

2,892

 

Student Housing

Student Beds

 

2,600

 

2,807

Construct 100% of all student beds on- campus

TOTALS

4,772

5,699

 


Table 5. Required Housing by Increments of Academic Development

Phase of Academic Development (S.F.)

% of Housing Required per Phase

 

Market- Rate and Inclusion-ary Units Required

Below Market- Rate Units Required

Total Units Required

Student Beds Required

Phase 1 Up to 568,750

 

25%

Net Increase

310

233

543

650

Sub-Total

310

233

543

650

Phase 2   Up to 1,137,500

 

50%

Net Increase

310

233

543

650

Sub-Total

620

466

1,086

1,300

 

Phase 3   Up to 1,706,250

 

 

75%

Net Increase

 

310

 

233

 

543

 

650

Sub-Total

930

699

1,629

1,950

Phase 4   Up to 2,275,000

 

100%

Net Increase

309

234

543

650

TOTALS

1,239

933

2,172

2,600

 

B. Traffic and Transportation Recommendations

Since adoption of the 2000 GUP, the Peak Hour No Net New Commute Trips standard has been the framework for addressing traffic associated with new development on the Stanford campus. Compliance with the standard is assessed annually by monitoring peak hour, commute direction traffic (i.e., traffic entering the campus in the morning and leaving in the evening) at gateway intersections along a cordon. The threshold for lack of conformance with the standard is an increase in total traffic levels at the gateway intersections of 1% or more as compared to the baseline established in 2001.[15] Stanford may reduce monitoring counts that exceed the baseline through application of trip reduction credits awarded by the County based on Stanford’s contribution to efforts in the surrounding area that result in trip reduction.[16]

 

The EIR identifies the no net new commute standard as the first-line mitigation for the project’s traffic impacts. If Stanford is not successful in achieving No Net New Commute Trips, alternative mitigation in the EIR requires the University to make fair-share payments to partially fund mitigation improvements identified in the EIR that would mitigate traffic impacts.

 

While the EIR identifies that neither of these mitigations is sufficient to mitigate the traffic impacts, which remain significant and unavoidable, previous Transportation Demand Management programs implemented by Stanford to achieve the No Net New Commute Trips standard have been very effective in reducing peak hour commute trips in the commute direction. As traffic has increased over time in the area around Stanford University, there is growing concern that focusing only on traffic in the peak direction during one hour in the morning and one hour in the evening is not sufficient, and that additional controls are needed for longer peak periods, the reverse commute direction, and for non-commute hours. Additionally, the findings for the General Use Permit require a showing that the project “will not substantially worsen traffic congestion affecting the surrounding area” and, thus, these conditions impose an additional heightened standard, higher than the traffic significance threshold used in the EIR, to satisfy this use permit finding.

 

The existing 2000 GUP’s traffic metrics focus on Stanford as a job center with the dominant commute traffic pattern consisting of traffic heading to the campus in the morning and away from the campus in the evening. As Stanford adds faculty and staff housing units on the campus, other household members who do not work or attend classes at Stanford, leave the campus in the morning for work or school and return in the evening, contributing to a “reverse commute.” 

 

Reverse Commute

In response to the Planning Commission’s requests for analysis on the reverse commute, the County’s traffic consultant, AECOM, provided a memorandum on the reverse commute, included in this report as Attachment P. While a reverse commuter typically takes advantage of otherwise unused transportation capacity, in its memorandum, AECOM points out that Stanford University represents a somewhat atypical situation. The Stanford commute occurs within the context of the larger Bay Area commute, such that the “reverse commute” direction for campus traffic coincides with the “peak direction” for residents in the surrounding communities who do not work or go to school at Stanford.

 

The EIR confirms that reverse commute traffic for Alternative A exacerbates existing traffic congestion, resulting in significant traffic impacts at three intersections. Like the commute direction impacts, the fair-share payments for intersection mitigation improvements for these intersections are not sufficient to mitigate the traffic impacts, which remain significant and unavoidable. As documented in the EIR, reverse commute traffic results in five to eight impacted intersections due to Alternative B and A, respectively.[17] A new reverse commute traffic standard would encourage Stanford to broaden its Transportation Demand Management (TDM) programs to minimize new reverse commute traffic on already highly congested roadways in the area around the Stanford campus. AECOM prepared a memorandum on TDM at Stanford, included in this staff report as Attachment Q.

 

Average Daily Trips

In addition, a longer two-hour “peak period,” and average daily trips (ADT) regulations, would provide a comprehensive traffic approach for this GUP. Controls for longer peak periods address traffic that might otherwise spill outside peak hours as congestion increases.  AECOM prepared a memorandum on ADT, included in this staff report as Attachment R.

 

ADT regulations address total vehicle trips over a 24-hour period, providing a more comprehensive picture of the traffic congestion, energy consumption, and air pollution associated with ongoing Stanford development. Other Bay Area jurisdictions that are currently implementing ADT traffic regulations and/or fee programs include Menlo Park, Mountain View, and Los Gatos. 

 

Recommended Conditions of Approval

In order to ensure that Stanford development does “not substantially worsen traffic congestion affecting the surrounding area” (a required finding for approval of this GUP – Zoning Ordinance § 5.65.030), the Administration recommends traffic Conditions of Approval structured in three tiers that retain the No Net New Commute Trips standard and establish new trip reduction and monitoring controls. Following is an overview of the recommendations.

 

Tier 1.  No Net New Commute Trips, Peak Hour and Peak Period

·        Require Stanford to achieve the No Net New Commute Trips standard during both the AM and PM peak hours and peak periods (i.e., avoid exceeding the commute direction peak hour and peak period baselines (established in 2001) by 1% or greater in any year). The peak hours consist of the one-hour period in the morning and the one-hour period in the evening with the highest traffic volume. The peak periods consist of the three-hour period in the morning and the three-hour period in the evening with the highest traffic volume. 

 

 

Tier 2.  No Net New Commute Trips – Reverse Commute

·        Require Stanford to use its best efforts to achieve no net increase in reverse commute trips during the peak hours and peak periods (i.e., avoid exceeding the reverse commute direction peak hour or peak period baselines by 2% or greater). 

 

Tier 3.  Average Daily Trips

·        Require Stanford to implement all feasible measures to achieve no net new increase in Average Daily Trips (ADT) during weekdays only (i.e., avoid exceeding the baseline by 3% or greater). 

 

In response to the Planning Commission recommendations, staff has modified the Transportation Conditions, including the addition of the confidence interval back into the trip baselines, and allowing Stanford to use trip credits for Reverse Commute and ADT.

 

See the Administration’s Recommended Conditions of Approval dated October 8, 2019 (Attachment I) for the full Transportation Conditions.

 

Other Traffic and Transportation Requirements

The Conditions of Approval include the following requirements:

·        Regulations for independent and verifiable annual traffic monitoring and reporting to determine compliance with the GUP’s traffic standards (Conditions F).

·        Procedures for granting trip credits as a result of Stanford’s funding programs or off-campus improvements that shift travelers away from motor vehicles (Condition F).

·        Based on Stanford’s offer in the GUP Application, requirements for safe routes to school improvements near Nixon and Escondido Elementary Schools (Condition).

·        Requirements for fair-share contributions to fund safe routes to school studies and improvements if a new school is required or school attendance boundaries are changed to accommodate the increase in Stanford K-12 students (Condition).

·        Provision for fair-share traffic improvement payments. 

·        A parking cap of 21,651 and exclusion from the parking count of:

o       Structured parking for faculty/staff/worker housing, up to one space per unit;

o       Bus and oversized vehicle parking; and

o       Emergency vehicle parking (police, fire, ambulance).

·        Requirement that Stanford provide fair-share funding for parking studies and residential permit parking programs as needed to ensure that spillover parking does not impact residential neighborhoods (Condition).

 

C.               Other GUP Recommendations

Other recommended Conditions of Approval require the following:

·        Open Space.  Preservation of open space and natural resources by focusing new development within the Academic Growth Boundary (AGB) and limiting development outside the AGB;

·        Phased Development.  Phased authorization of development within the General Use Permit, ensuring that Stanford complies with the requirements for traffic and housing before authorizing additional development phases;

·        El Camino Real Frontage Plan.  Stanford funding of an updated El Camino Real Frontage Plan for Stanford lands along the south side of El Camino Real to identify standards for future development;

·        Master Drainage Plan. Stanford preparation and implementation of an updated Master Drainage Plan to achieve a storm drain system that avoids increases in frequency, severity, or lateral extent of flooding in San Francisquito and Matadero Creeks to the satisfaction of the Planning Director; and,

·        Municipal Services Study.  Stanford funding and implementation of a Municipal Services Study to identify service needs of the Stanford community. In response to concerns raised in Stanford’s September 23 letter to the Board of Supervisors, the Administration revised the condition to make explicit that the results of the Study would be presented to the Board for its consideration in a public meeting. If the Board concludes that there are inadequate levels of municipal services, it could direct County staff to work with Stanford to improve service levels. In addition, the Parks and Child Care studies were consolidated into the Municipal Services Study. (Condition O).

 

IV.              ADMINISTRATION RECOMMENDATIONS – COMMUNITY PLAN

The Administration is recommending the County amend the Stanford Community Plan (SCP) in several areas, including (a) updating background text and figures to reflect current information, and (b) updating policies and implementation measures to reflect current conditions. The full text of the SCP with Administration recommendations is included in Attachment F and a summary is provided in Table 6. The findings to support the SCP amendments are set forth in Attachment G.

 

Key among the recommended amendments are provisions to extend and strengthen the open space protections of the Academic Growth Boundary (AGB). These provisions and other regulations and provisions that work together to protect the Stanford foothills are discussed below.

 

Open Space Protection

The AGB separates the central campus area, where future academic and housing development is planned, from the foothills to the west, where development is restricted (see Figure 5 of Attachment L). The adopted SCP establishes the AGB in its current location for a period of 25 years (until 2025) and until development reaches 17.3 million square feet, and requires a super-majority vote (4/5) of the Board of Supervisors for any decision to amend the AGB. Stanford is expected to reach the 17.3 million square-foot threshold by approximately 2023.

 

The findings of the Sustainable Development Study Supplement confirm that the land area within the AGB is sufficient to support Stanford development at historic rates for 100 years or more. In order to ensure that future development occurs within the central campus and that existing open space continues to be protected, the Administration recommends updating the Community Plan’s AGB provisions as follows:

 

·        Extend the duration of the AGB by 99 years (until 2118).

·        Retain the required four-fifths vote of the Board of Supervisors for any revision of the AGB.

·        Identify the factors that would need to be considered in any decision to change the existing AGB.

 

These AGB protections establish clear expectations for preservation of open space within the Stanford foothills. These protections are supported by SCP Land Use Designations, Zoning District regulations, U.S. Fish and Wildlife environmental requirements, and recommended GUP Conditions of Approval, all of which severely limit new uses or structures in the foothills outside the AGB. Specifically, any development would be subject to the use regulations, structure limitations, and natural resource protection requirements of the SCA Special Conservation Area Zoning District or the OS/F Open Space and Field Research Zoning District (whichever is applicable), as well as requirements of the Habitat Conservation Plan and associated conservation easements (California Tiger Salamander Reserve and Matadero/Deer easements) and 50-year no build areas. The recommended GUP Conditions of Approval further limit structures to a total of 1,540 square feet and prohibit new housing units within the Foothills District (Condition C).

 

The Administration finds that the AGB, together with the General Plan level land use designations, zoning regulations and GUP conditions of approval are sufficient to ensure the long-term protection and retention of the open space areas/Foothills of the Community Plan Area. While the Zoning Ordinance (Chapter 5.45) does provide for permanent open space easements to be required for “clustered development” as defined by the code, this open space protection mechanism is focused mainly on rural residential subdivisions. This allows for the shifting of allowed densities on large properties and creates an appropriate mechanism for the land area that is used to allow for the overall development density in the clustered areas, with the remainder to be protected as open space. The situation with Stanford lands is different in that there is no significant underlying General Plan or zoning designated development potential contained in the open space/Foothills area. This means that the clustering of development in exchange for permanent open space would not be appropriately applied with a zoning mechanism.

 

School Site Designation

The Administration recommends that the Potential Future School Site be relocated on the Community Plan Land Use Map to a location within the AGB closer to the planned future housing identified in the GUP Application within the Quarry District on the west side of the Stanford campus. The recommended changes to the Community Plan before the Board include a new policy (SCP-LU 23) that requires a community plan amendment to relocate the Potential Future School Site. Since the Community Plan is before the Board along with the GUP application, this would be the appropriate time to consider utilizing this high-level planning tool to integrate school site planning with proximate new housing developmentThis action has also been requested by members of the public who have provided spoken or written comments requesting that the County plan for a future school on the west side of the Stanford campus.

 

Table 6.  Summary of Recommended Community Plan Amendments

Growth and Development

Maximum Development

Context: Development proposed by the GUP Application exceeds the 17.3 million square-foot limit established by the SCP (adopted SCP-GD 2).

Proposed Amendment: Establish a new development cap of

20.4 million square feet of academic/academic support development and student housing.

Academic Growth Boundary

Context: The adopted SCP allows for Stanford to request a modification of the Academic Growth Boundary (AGB) as early as 2025. Any decision to amend the AGB requires a 4/5 vote of the Board of Supervisors (adopted SCP-GD 3).

Proposed Amendments: Extend duration of the AGB for 99 years (until 2118), retain the 4/5 vote requirement for amendments to the AGB, and identify specific factors that should be considered prior to any decision to change the location of the AGB (proposed SCP-GD 3)

Land Use

Public School Site Designation

Proposed Amendments: Add policy acknowledging that identified potential future school site may be relocated to a different location if warranted by future development patterns (SCP-LU 23)

Alignment of Zoning and SCP Designations

Proposed Amendments: Add policy language specifying the County should periodically evaluate zoning designations to ensure that they conform and are consistent with SCP policies and land use designations (proposed SCP-LU 4) and specifically evaluate the A-1 District (proposed SCP-LU (i)1) and the Campus Residential-Low Density areas within the San Juan District (proposed SCP-LU (i) 2), and create a new Campus Open Space Zoning District and apply it to areas designated Campus Open Space on the Land Use Plan (proposed SCP-LU (i) 3).

Housing

Housing/Jobs Housing Balance

Context: Current SCP policies call for housing types and supply adequate to meet the needs of Stanford faculty, staff, students, postgraduate fellows and medical interns (adopted SCP-H 1), including affordable housing (adopted SCP-H 6).

Proposed Amendments: Add policy language that requires that affordable housing be provided at all affordable income categories documented (proposed SCP-H 6), and clarify that housing requirements apply to “other workers” as well as faculty and staff.

Health and Safety

Health & Safety/Climate Change

Proposed Amendment: Incorporate the County’s Health Element addressing social and environmental health and climate change into the SCP for ease of reference.


STANFORD’S OBLIGATIONS FOR SCHOOL FACILITY IMPACTS

The State of California authorizes school districts to justify and adopt (subject to specific requirements) developer impact fees to mitigate the impacts of new development on school facilities. The California Government Code (Section 65996) specifies that payment of a school district’s developer impact fee shall be considered full mitigation for impacts a development may have on schools and specifically prohibits a local jurisdiction from denying or refusing to approve a project based on a developer’s refusal to provide school facilities fees above and beyond the adopted school district fees. Palo Alto Unified School District, which serves residents of the Stanford University campus, has adopted the following school impact fees:

 

·        Residential Development $3.79 per square-foot of assessable space

·        Commercial Development $0.61 per square-foot of assessable space

 

Academic support space and student housing/beds are charged the rate for Commercial Development. Payment of these fees prior to issuance of a building permit for development satisfies Stanford’s obligation in regard to school facility impacts. The total amount of school facility impact fees that Stanford would pay over the life of the proposed GUP is $4.2 million.

 

VI.     ADMINISTRATION RECOMMENDATIONS – WATER SUPPLY ASSESSMENT

The WSAs conclude that water supplies are sufficient to accommodate the potable and non- potable water demand from buildout of both the proposed project and Housing Alternatives A and B through existing water entitlements and resources under normal, single dry, and multiple dry water years (Attachment C). The WSAs for Alternatives A and B indicate that during normal water years, Stanford’s potable water allocation and existing non-potable water resources (groundwater and surface water) would be sufficient to accommodate the potable and non-potable water demand through buildout of each of the Alternatives, but in single and multiple dry water year scenarios, Stanford would need to supplement its potable water supply with treated groundwater from its wells in order to accommodate the estimated increase in potable water demand.

 

The WSAs point out that in multiple dry years, Stanford would implement water conservation measures to ensure that Stanford’s potable and non-potable water use would not exceed the available supply, reducing potable water demand by 15% in the second year and 25% in the third year. Stanford achieved such reductions during the most recent drought under the 2000 General Use Permit.

 

In response to comments raised during the Planning Commission’s consideration of the GUP application relating to the State Water Resources Control Board’s amendments to the Bay Delta Water Quality Control Plan, the WSA has been revised.  The revisions conclude that despite potential water supply reductions during extended droughts, sufficient water supplies will be available to serve the Stanford Campus under the two housing alternatives because (a) Stanford curtails water use during extended droughts; and (b) Stanford has the ability to meet its potable water needs during an extended drought through use of groundwater. County staff has determined, based on the entire record, that projected water supplies will be sufficient to satisfy the demands of the Administration Recommended GUP, in addition to existing and planned future uses. The Administration recommends approval of the Water Supply Assessments for the proposed project and Housing Alternatives A and B.

 

VII.     ADMIN. RECOMMENDATION – DEVELOPMENT AGREEMENT APPLICATION

On June 19, 2018, the Board of Supervisors approved a Zoning Ordinance amendment authorizing the use of development agreements and establishing procedural standards for their adoption and maintenance (See Attachment S for Ordinance Section 5.20.230). A development agreement is a voluntary contract entered into by a public agency and applicant and enables a public agency to obtain community benefits from an applicant beyond a level that can be obtained through existing regulations and the exercise of its police powers. Because a development agreement is a voluntary contract, it is not required for purposes of the County’s processing and consideration of the GUP application. The Board of Supervisors would make a decision on a proposed development agreement following a recommendation by the Planning Commission.

 

Stanford University submitted a development agreement application on July 27, 2018 (Attachment M). After the Administration requested information that was not incorporated in the original application, the application was deemed complete by the Administration on October 17, 2018.

 

At its October 16, 2018 meeting, the Board authorized the Administration to enter into a process for negotiations with Stanford University for a possible development agreement.[18] The Board’s action included the following direction:

 

·        Form an ad hoc committee comprised of Supervisors Simitian and Chavez;

·        Provide monthly status reports to the HLUET committee (for HLUET staff reports see Attachment T); and

·        Publish for public review any negotiated agreements, environmental impact reports, and related staff reports 14 days prior to the Board’s consideration of such an agreement.

 

The Development Agreement Ordinance does not prescribe a negotiation process, and flexibility and discretion are provided to County negotiators to respond to the specific set of circumstances that may arise for any given negotiation.

 

The County Ad Hoc Committee and Stanford held their first meeting on November 30, 2018. The purpose of the meeting was to develop ground rules for the negotiations. While the staff of the County and Stanford were negotiating mutually satisfactory ground rules, on January 28, 2019, Stanford submitted the first of two offer letters (Attachment U) relating to its GUP application.

 

January 28, 2019 Offer Letter Analysis

In this offer letter, Stanford proposed the following:

 

Stanford’s Housing Offer

Stanford proposed to provide 750 total workforce units (200 more units than in its application), of which 600 would be deed-restricted affordable workforce units.

 

By comparison, the Conditions of Approval require 2,172 total units, of which 1,239 would be market-rate and inclusionary units and 933 would be affordable units. Stanford’s total workforce housing units proposal (750) represented only 34.5% of what the County would require to fully address the housing demand resulting from GUP development.

 

Stanford’s Transportation Offer

Stanford proposed $11 million for 17 local bicycle and transit infrastructure projects in Palo Alto, Menlo Park, East Palo Alto, and San Mateo County.

 

Stanford’s Palo Alto Unified School District (PAUSD) Offer

Stanford proposed to provide $15.7 million in benefits to PAUSD:

 

·        Stanford would accelerate payment of required affordable housing fee revenue ($11 million) related to the 2000 GUP. This would not be new funding, merely an acceleration of required funding.

 

·        Stanford would accelerate payment of required school impact fees ($4.2 million) related to new GUP application. This would not be new funding, merely an acceleration of required funding.

 

·        Stanford would provide $450,000 in Safe Routes to School improvements. This offer reflected a net value of $150,000 as $300,000 in Safe Routes to School improvements were already proposed in Stanford’s GUP application.

 

Stanford-Requested Concessions

In exchange for the items identified above, Stanford sought:

 

·        Rescission of the County’s Housing Ordinances.

·        Streamlining of certain housing and other projects in the GUP application. Stanford sought to avoid, for example, Architecture and Site Approval (ASA) for proposed housing along El Camino Real in the Quarry District.

·        Conditions of Approval and Mitigation Measures that are acceptable to Stanford.

·        A requirement that Stanford could determine, based on its consultant’s report, the amount of fair share payments it would pay in the event it could not meet No New Net Commute Trip standards in the proposed GUP.

·        The ability to transfer the long-term deed restrictions on 400 of the 600 affordable units identified above to other existing or new units on Stanford’s lands.

·        Trip credits for the 17 bicycle/transit infrastructure improvements it proposed as community benefits.

 

County staff concluded that Stanford’s January 28, 2019 offer letter contained benefits that were not true benefits, and that the remaining actual benefits were insufficient and that concessions requested impaired the County’s ability to protect the community from the impacts of the proposed GUP development.

 

On February 1, 2019, the Ground Rules for development agreement negotiations (Attachment V) were approved by both parties and April 15, 2019 was established as the expiration date, although the rules could have been extended with approval by both parties.

 

A second meeting of the parties was tentatively scheduled for April 30, 2019. The gap in time between the first and second meeting of the parties is due to the fact that County staff was continuing to prepare the Conditions of Approval (COAs). Establishing the COAs was essential before embarking on negotiations because they establish the regulatory baseline and community benefits are those things that exceed what can be obtained through existing regulations and the exercise of a jurisdiction’s police powers.

 

Negotiations Suspended

The approved Ground Rules called for neither the County nor Stanford to engage in discussions with third parties resulting in a deal that would then be presented as a proposal during the negotiation period. On March 12, 2019, Stanford officials notified the County that it intended to engage in discussions on school benefits with the Palo Alto Unified School District (PAUSD). On April 15, Stanford and PAUSD issued a joint press release stating that a conditional agreement on school benefits had been reached that would go into effect only if Stanford and the County were able to reach agreement on a development agreement.[19] Stanford’s actions during the negotiation period violated the Ground Rules because it reached a deal with PAUSD that was connected to and contingent upon the execution of a development agreement between the County and Stanford.

 

The County notified Stanford on April 16 that it was canceling the April 30 negotiation meeting and suspending negotiations. At the April 18, 2019 HLUET meeting, the Administration announced that the County had suspended the development agreement negotiations with Stanford as a result of the third-party agreement.[20]

 

The County communicated to Stanford that the County would consider re-opening negotiations if two conditions were met:

 

·        Future negotiations occur in open and public meetings.

·        An agreement between Stanford and PAUSD offering school benefits equal to or greater than those contained in the April 15 conditional agreement and not contingent on a development agreement executed between Stanford and the County.

 

Stanford officials have not agreed to these conditions.

 

Meanwhile, County staff continued to process Stanford Universitys GUP application. County staff held two Planning Commission (PC) study sessions and conducted a hearing over three meetings on May 30, June 13, and June 27.

 

Stanford’s June 24, 2019 Offer Letter

At its June 27, 2019 meeting, the Planning Commission unanimously (7-0) approved staff’s recommendations for the GUP application except for one recommendation, denial of Stanford’s development agreement application, which was approved (6-1). Before the June 27 Planning Commission meeting and in anticipation of final action by the Planning Commission, Stanford submitted a second offer letter (Attachment W) to the County on June 24, 2019.[21] 

 

The County’s analysis (Attachment X) of Stanford’s June 24 offer letter concluded that the value of Stanford’s offer of community benefits was $168.3 million, which represents 3.6% of the $4.7 billion purported value of the benefits package. In addition, Stanford’s offer required that all of its requested revisions to the County’s conditions of approval and Community Plan amendments be incorporated.

 

Stanford’s proposed changes to the conditions and Community Plan would result in the loss of important community protections that would enable County staff to recommend approval of Stanford’s requested 3.5 million square feet development application.

 

Stanford’s Housing Offer

Stanford proposed the following for faculty/staff housing: 1,307 new faculty/staff units, half credit (650 units) for its already constructed 1,300 units in Escondido Village, and 215 units at its Middle Plaza complex in Menlo Park. The Administration does not view this as a viable offer because the housing at Escondido Village is student housing, not faculty/staff housing, and, furthermore, Escondido Village and Middle Plaza fulfill 2000 GUP-related housing demand, not new housing demand for future development under the current GUP Application. Stanford proposed to build 1,307 of the 2,172 total housing units required in the Administration’s recommended Conditions of Approval. This offer is 40% less than the documented demand for housing resulting from the proposed GUP development.

 

Stanford offered 692 of the 1,131 affordable housing units that are required in the conditions. This offer is 39% less than the documented demand for affordable housing resulting from the proposed GUP development.

 

The June 24 offer letter also called for the County’s Housing Ordinances to be rescinded.

 

Stanford’s Transportation Offer

Stanford’s letter proposed to fund $30.3 million in pedestrian, bicycle, and transit infrastructure projects near the campus. However, Stanford would also seek to revise the proposed transportation Conditions of Approval to roll them back to the No Net New Commute Trip standard established in the 2000 GUP and eliminate conditions designed to ensure that traffic congestion is not substantially worsened in the Stanford area.

 

Stanford’s September 17, 2019 Letter

After the Board’s July recess, Stanford requested a meeting with the County on September 11, 2019. Subsequent to the meeting, Stanford issued a letter to Supervisors Chavez and Simitian on September 17 (Attachment Y) to reiterate statements made at the September 11, 2019 meeting.

 

Stanford continues to seek a development agreement in order to negotiate key housing and transportation conditions to reduce their effect. Stanford continues to seek, for example, negotiating the number of total housing units, location, and timing. The net effect would be to reduce the number of housing units that Stanford would be responsible for establishing over the life of the proposed GUP.

 

The Administration’s position remains that these housing and transportation conditions are important to the Administration’s determination that this application is a responsible development proposal and in the Administration’s recommendation to the Board that the 3.5 million square feet development application be approved.

 

Stanford’s September 23, 2019 Letter

Before the Board September 24, 2019 Study Session, Stanford submitted a letter to the Board of Supervisors presenting its requests. This letter is, in effect, the September 17 that was sent to Supervisors Chavez and Simitian, but is addressed to the entire Board. This letter is Attachment Z.

 

In summary, County staff concluded that Stanford’s two offer letters contained benefits that were not true benefits, and that the remaining actual benefits were insufficient and that the requested concessions could impair the County’s ability to make the necessary findings that protect the community from the impacts of the proposed GUP development and enable staff to recommend approval of the GUP. Because a development agreement is not before the Board for its consideration, staff is recommending denial of the development agreement application.

 

BACKGROUND

The project site consists of approximately 4,017 acres of Stanford University lands in unincorporated Santa Clara County located adjacent to the Cities of Palo Alto and Menlo Park, the Towns of Woodside and Portola Valley, and unincorporated areas of San Mateo County, as shown in Figure 6 of Attachment L. The project site includes the University’s central campus area located generally north of Junipero Serra Boulevard (1,724 acres) and the largely undeveloped Stanford foothills located generally south of Junipero Serra Boulevard (2,293 acres). It does not include other Stanford lands located in adjacent jurisdictions.

 

The central campus area is developed with a diverse mix of land uses, including classrooms, academic offices, laboratory space, athletic venues, museums, performance and arts venues, lands for outdoor learning, student housing, faculty/staff housing, support facilities, and open spaces. The Stanford foothills include a mixture of grasslands, woodlands, and riparian areas. Existing uses consist of livestock grazing and other agricultural uses, academic facilities, a portion of the Stanford Golf Course, and public and private trails.

 

Regulatory Overview

Since the 1960s, the County has regulated development of the Stanford University campus through a series of General Use Permits that authorized uses and levels of new development for implementation over a period of years. Stanford University is the only entity the County with a General Use Permit. The site currently operates under the Stanford 2000 GUP, approved by the Board of Supervisors on December 12, 2000. On that date, the Board of Supervisors also adopted the Stanford University Community Plan (SCP) as a component of the General Plan to provide a land use framework for development of the Stanford University campus. The currently proposed GUP is intended to replace the approved 2000 GUP that is nearing full implementation

 

Pursuant to the SCP and the 1985 Policy Agreement, academic development of unincorporated Stanford lands is subject to the County’s land use jurisdiction. The Stanford Policy Agreement among the County, City of Palo Alto, and Stanford University establishes mutual policies regarding land use, annexation, and development, and specifies that unincorporated Stanford lands planned for academic use are subject to the County’s General Plan, Zoning Ordinance, and other land use requirements, and are not subject to annexation to the City of Palo Alto. The agreement further clarifies that lands planned for non-academic uses (i.e., uses intended to produce income to support the University) require annexation prior to development.

 

Based on the requirements of the A1 General Use Zoning District, which is applicable to most of the site’s central campus area, a Use Permit is required for new academic, academic support, and housing uses. Because the current application includes Stanford Community Plan and zoning map amendments that require approval by the Board of Supervisors, all three proposed land use approvals are being processed concurrently, with the Planning Commission in an advisory role and the Board of Supervisors as the final decision-maker, consistent with Zoning Ordinance Section 5.10.060.

 

Public Outreach

The public hearing dates for the proposed General Use Permit and related applications have been noticed in accordance with applicable requirements and augmented with additional efforts. A 45-day notice on the proposed Community Plan amendments was mailed to external agencies on September 6, 2019. A published notice in a newspaper of general circulation was provided in the Palo Alto Weekly on September 13, 2019. A public notice was mailed to all nearby property owners on September 19, 2019. A courtesy email notice has been provided to interested parties on the County’s Stanford opt-in list and was sent on October 1, 2019. Due to high levels of public interest, a new dedicated website (CountyStanford.info) was also established to provide additional public notice and information opportunities.

 

Responses

The County’s environmental consultant, ESA, has prepared responses to CEQA-related comments from the Planning Commission hearings. The response to comments is included in this report in the First Amendment to the Final EIR (Attachment AA).

 

Changes made to the Conditions of Approval since the June 27, 2019 PC Hearing are included in the entire text of the Administration’s Recommended General Use Permit Conditions of Approval (Attachment I) as tracked changes.

 

At the September 24, 2019 Board of Supervisors Study Session, staff received requests from the Board on the following information:

 

·        A1 Zoning – Attachment BB.

·        Locations of Stanford lands in other jurisdictionsAttachment BB;

·        Escondido Village in relation to the 2000 General Use Permit – Attachment BB;

 

Next Steps

The Public Hearing before the Board of Supervisors on the Stanford University GUP Application will continue over the following meeting dates:

 

·        Tuesday, October 22, 2019 at 6:00 p.m. at the Palo Alto City Council Chambers; and

·        Tuesday, November 5, 2019 at 1:30 p.m. at the County Government Center.

 

The Board of Supervisors may take formal action on any of the meeting dates.

 


[1] Local Agency Formation Commission of Santa Clara County, Cities Service Review, p. 7 (Dec. 2015), http://www.santaclaralafco.org/file/ServiceReviews/CitiesSR2015/2CSRR_ExecSumm.pdf.

[2] Of the total 2,035,000 sq. ft. approved under the 2000 GUP, this is the remaining amount as of 8/31/2018 (Annual Report #18 Dated July 2019) that has not been constructed and for which no application for architecture and site approval or building permit has been submitted. The actual carry-over amount will be determined on the effective date of the GUP.

[3] Stanford proposes Planning Commission review and approval prior to implementation of these spaces.

[4] The Stanford University Parking Space Survey of July 2018 indicated 1,352 remaining authorized parking spaces. The actual parking carry-over would be determined on the effective date of the GUP.

[5] WSAs are a part of the full environmental analysis prepared for Alternatives A and B in order to identify the implications of constructing additional on-campus housing.

[6] https://www.sccgov.org/sites/dpd/programs/stanford/pages/gup2018_ceqa.aspx

[7] A First Amendment to the Final Environmental Impact Report has been prepared to include additions to the Final EIR since its release in December 2018.  The First Amendment includes the updated Water Supply Assessment; response to comments raised during the Planning Commission hearing; modifications to mitigation measures; and, an errata sheet tracking minor changes to text within the Final EIR.

[8] Metropolitan Transportation Commission and Association of Bay Area Governments, CASA Compact (January 2019), p. i, https://mtc.ca.gov/sites/default/files/CASA_Compact.pdf

[9] State of California, Department of Finance, E-5 Population and Housing Estimates for Cities, Counties, and the State, 2011-2018 with 2010 Census Benchmark (May 2019), http://www.dof.ca.gov/Forecasting/Demographics/Estimates/E-5/.

[10] Local Agency Formation Commission of Santa Clara County, Cities Service Review, p. 7 (Dec. 2015), http://www.santaclaralafco.org/file/ServiceReviews/CitiesSR2015/2CSRR_ExecSumm.pdf.

[11] The KMA Nexus Analysis adjusted the number of workers identified by Stanford to reflect part-time workers (i.e. less than 50% of a Full Time Equivalent).

[12] The total number of Below Market Rate Units as identified in the Nexus Study was adjusted downward to 933 to account for overlap between the Housing Impact Mitigation Fee Ordinance and the Inclusionary Housing Ordinance.

 

[13] Deed restriction is required for a minimum of 55 years.

[14] This would include 198 inclusionary deed restricted affordable units (16%) and 1041 market rate units.

[15] For example, the baseline established in 2001 for total commute trips to the campus passing through the cordon gateways in the AM peak hour is 3,439 trips. An increase of 1% or more (i.e., 35 trips or more) would constitute a violation of the standard.

[16] For example, if Stanford funds a trip reduction project in Palo Alto, and can demonstrate that the project would reduce 10 peak hour trips, the County could award Stanford 10 peak hour trip reduction credits and those credits could be used to reduce peak hour trip exceedances.

[17] Stanford Univ 2018 GUP Final EIR, State Clearinghouse No. 2017012022, Appendix RCA - Reverse Commute Analysis, Table 4, page 10.

[18] http://sccgov.iqm2.com/Citizens/Detail_LegiFile.aspx?ID=93643

[19] https://www.pausd.org/explore-pausd/news/press-release-conditional-agreement-stanford-gup

[20] http://sccgov.iqm2.com/Citizens/Detail_LegiFile.aspx?ID=95844

[21] http://sccgov.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=4&ID=189361&MeetingID=11160

Meeting History

Oct 8, 2019 9:30 AM Video Board of Supervisors Regular Meeting

Supervisor Ellenberg left her seat at 4:00 p.m.

On order of President Simitian, no objection being made, the hearing was continued to October 22, 2019.

RESULT:CONTINUED [NO VOTE]Next: 10/22/2019 6:00 PM
Oct 22, 2019 6:00 PM Video Board of Supervisors Special Meeting
RESULT:CONTINUED [NO VOTE]Next: 11/5/2019 9:30 AM
Nov 5, 2019 9:30 AM Video Board of Supervisors Regular Meeting
draft Draft

Item No. 9 was cancelled at the request of Administration and deleted from the agenda as a result of the withdrawal of Stanford University's application for a General Use Permit.

RESULT:DELETED [UNANIMOUS]
MOVER:Susan Ellenberg, Supervisor
SECONDER:Mike Wasserman, Supervisor
AYES:Mike Wasserman, Cindy Chavez, Dave Cortese, Susan Ellenberg, S. Joseph Simitian

Transcript

Oct 8, 2019 9:30 AMBoard of SupervisorsRegular Meeting

 

1:45 PMPlease vote on their screens. Waiting on a couple. Supervisors, when you're ready. Supervisor cortese, you good to go on this one. I don't want to rush you if you're still reading materials. I understand. All five have cast their votes and we'll ask the clerk to display the results and announce the motion carries 5-0. Thank you very much. Ok. That takes us then in the odd math of the day back to item number 12, which is the stanford gupp and why don't we ask the clerk if you could bring up the cards we have on this, we'll get a ough sense for how many people we have to speak. And please bear with me for a moment. Colleagues, I think we're pushing 40 speakers. How much time would you like to allocate under those set of circumstances? Bear with me, please.
1:47 PMWe are at item number 12. ford, I know that ounty council wants me to establish a good record. Ford, item number 12 is a public hearing rewarding the stanford university general use permit. We have a number of items contained that they are in, so what i'm going to do is ask the department staff to first present a report. We'll hear that report, colleagues, going to ask board members to hold off on comments or questions except for brief clarifying questions if any after the report. All of us, myself included will have to try to exercise some discipline i'm sure because there is a lot to unpack here. After the staff report, we can to the applicant for university. We'll take all of the speakers who turned cards in. The pplicant understands those who are participating in the application are not then to repeat as speakers subsequently. Let me just confirm with miss gallegos and ms. Williams, do the sequence right?
1:49 PMThat's correct. we ask department staff to provide us with a verbal report to supplement the terse contained in our agenda and packet.
Good afternoon, deputy county executive. I'm going to introduce staff and consultants who worked on this project. The planning director jacqueline on shadow and rob eastwood, our planning manager. In the audience, greg stefan ich. To my far right is maryian mictus, our unsung hero, a planner with the m group and to my immediate right, jeff bradley, the principle with m group and also the project manager for this particular application. I wanted to also note ford that all the 28 attachments n this packet are -- have been submitted, and they're there in the pocket available for everybody. And then lastly, before I turn it over to Mr. Bradley, I wanted to note that this is noticed as a hearing because we have the permit application before you, but as alluded to by the board president, it's a little it like a steady session insofar as we have a really steady presentation. With that, i'm going to turn it over to Mr. Bradley.
1:51 PMIssued just indicate at the last workshop that we had colleagues, we got organized to hear from public agency representatives first in the convince of speakers, hat was the practice that seemed to work well at the planning commission, have had had the opportunity to do that today. We're going to take the cards in the order that the clerk has handed them to me. We're going to try to get organized if we can do so at the next meeting, which is on the 22nd, the city of palo alto. I wanted everyone to know today when the cards came in, they came in and we are going to take them in the order they were handed to me. Thank you for letting me insert that.
1:52 PMThank you. so today, we will review stanford's general permit use application. The environmental impact report for this roject,ed administration's recommendations on the general use permit, changes to the stanford community plan and overview of items elated to public school facilities, the water supply assessment that has been prepared for the project as well as the development agreement application. We'll begin with the general se permit application that stanford submitted back in late 2016. The application is for the development of 2. 275 million square feet, net new square feet with academic and academic support space on the campus. In addition, there would be up to 2600 student beds, which would comprise 1. 225 million square feet of development. That amount of development would be anticipated to last until approximately 2035, or approximately 17 years from gup approval. This is a total of 25 million square feet of new space. In addition, the application includes several other items, 550 faculty and staff housing units, 40,000 square feet of child care or trip reduction space and 50,000 square feet of temporary construction serve space. This rate of growth is consistent with the recent historical growth rate of 1. 2% per year. This also represents approximately 20% increase in building for the ampus. Existing academic and student housing development in the stanford community plan area kansass of approximately 16. 9 million square feet currently. With the addition of 25 million square feet proposed, the total development would be 20. 4 million square feet of both academic space and student housing. Stanford proposes changes to the land use designations for two sites as shown on this map in the black circles. As you can see, the golf driving range on the left has changed from orange to purple. Stanford proposes to change the land use designation of this 20-acre site currently with a golf driving range from campus residential medium residential to the academic campus designation. Moving over to the circle on the right, stanford proposes to change the land used designation of approximately four acres consisting of parcels currently developed with faculty and staff residences and a student housing facility from academic campus to campus residential low density to reflect proposed land uses. The proposed amendments driving site would change from campus residential to a1 general use. The faculty housing sites from a1 general use low density campus residential. The administration is supportive of these changes. Moving now on to an overview of the e.
1:55 PMR prepared for this project, it was prepared as what's known as a program eir because this approach is appropriate for a series of actions that can e characterized as one large project. A program eir -- the eir evaluates potential environmental impacts from projects proposed by the university, including those specified in the general permit use application, proposed amends to the zoning map and to the community plan. The eir in addition to evaluating the proposed project evaluates six additional project alternatives, listed here on this slide. The house in alternative is in response to substantial public comments on the acute shortage-of a immediate area. It should be noted that the no project individual se permit alternative would require an amendment to the community plan because policy gd states hat development May only be permitted through a general use permit approved by the county. The proposed project and the two housing alternatives have significant and unavoidable impacts through the cultural noise and vibration and off campus housing consequences categories. Alternative a also known as the full housing alternative has significant and unavoidable impacts in the air quality category. The final eir concludes that alternative a in addition to the significant and other avoidable impacts would result in three significant and unavoidable air quality impacts. The administration recommends that the oard adopt and certify the stanford university 2018 final environmental impact report as completed and in conformance with seek wa requiring 2,172 housing units maximum of 2,892 units and maximum of 2,807 student beds. Alternative a total number of housing units and student beds as identified is needed to meet 100% of the housing demand generated by stanford says proposed project. State law listen an analysis of long term water supplies for large projects. Based on public comments received, the water supply assessment has been update since the planning meeting. Changes in response to severe drought in the future to the water quality control plan necessitated this update. The onclusion is that sufficient water supplies will be available to serve the campus under the proposed project and housing alternatives a and b. The approval of the general use permit is a quasi judicial action with findings for use permit as required by the county said ordinance code. This should look amiliar from our previous meeting where the zoning ordinance requires four major findings to be made in the affirmative before approval.
2:05 PMLast sect the board took legislative action with resulted in adjustable affordable housing, up to 8% of variable medium income. The ie from 80% to 120% ami at full market rate housing supported y the study. The basis for this includes the police power to protect public health, safety welfare.
2:06 PMHousing policy equires that new development. Transportation standards contained n the recommended commission of approval.
2:08 PMWell, average daily trips, 4 hours traffic count that captures of the traffic associated with the campus throughout the entire 4 hour day. The two hour and three hour peak hours that will give data prior to phase one commencing. For reverse strips, the peak hour and baseline set prior to phase two to allow for all the development authorized to the permitted and constructed and occupied. And at the end of the phase one before phase two commences the requirement to prepare a commute management plan to allow the opportunity to document how they would meet or exceed these requirements. Average daily trips follows the similar pattern where the baseline is set prior to set two. And there is a requirement to prepare an average daily trips management plan. In terms of what does it mean to be out of compliance? For commute trips the standard is 1% above the baseline. The baseline includes the 0% confidence interval. Starting in phase one for one year only. For reverse commute trips, the trigger amount is 2% above the baseline, also included the conference interval starting at phase two. Violations of that would occur if the traffic was over the baseline and the trigger amount and the conference interval for two out of three years. That would trigger the requirement for the deficiency plan. Once it is in place, one additional year only would be considered. Finally, tier three, average daily trips the baseline is 3% of the baseline. And 90% interval has been added and starting the phase two based on the traffic management plan. If there is two out of three, that would be the consequence, but only when linked to he consequence from a commute trip or reverse commute trip standard as well. The if it exceeds the baseline, when the requirement is achieved. At the reverse trips at the end of phase one there is a reverse trip management plan. If it violates two out of three years, that would trigger the reverse efficiency plan. Going through parking adjustments were made for all three metrics in exchange and in response for both input from the planning commission regarding feasibility. Number two, allow the trip adjustments to be used. Modified consequences to allow for the intermediate steps to encourage improvement over time. Finding the non-compliance development at a public hearing rather than the planning commission. With an approved deficiency plan in place, while an approve deficiency plan is in place would only occur in the reverse trips standards and triggers. Over all this provides an approach that has been re recalibrateed and input at appropriate times and provide more opportunities and time to engage with solutions. Moving on to other conditions. That are not housing or traffic. In terms of the academic growth boundary, all development under the general use permit is distributed within the agb. The updated academy policy that increases the requirement from 25 years from year 2,000 to when this is approved. This is rotected by open space and zone destination that and increases the requirement from 25 years from the year 2000 to when this is approved. I would like to point ut that there is a plan that has not been identified for this process that reads. If stanford is not providing appropriate level of services to its residents. This study would determine the appropriate service levels for each service. Language has been added to indicate that the studies should be based on comparable municipal services provided in cities in santa clara county, and reviewed by the board of supervisors. Two conditions have been recommended for deletion as child care. Is covered by the study. Moving now to the child care plan. The community plan guides all development within the plan area. There are three categories of changes to the community plan, background text to update background information. Accommodate changes proposed by stanford and updates necessary stated by stanford's general use permit placing. The department is recommending the county update and amend several areas including evising and updating key strategies, policies and placing measures chapter one discusses growth and development. The department proposes the following changes. Development proposed by the the gup application for a new development cap to 20. 4 million scare feet of academy/academy support student housing. It will move from 25 years to 99 years and require specific factors to be considered. We'll provide now a brief overview of the school issues as related to the general use permit and the community plan. School facility impact ees of 4. 2 million would accrue to the school district under build out of the general use permit based on the current fees and effect for residential development. The fees are $3. 79 per-square-foot. Per commercial development is $0. 61. In this case it includes acted development, academy support space including student house housing/beds. The future public school site designation, the administration is recommending the relocation of the school site on the community land use map here outside of the agp near page mill road on the east side of campus there, the light blue star to a location near page mill road on the west side of campus within what is known as the west campus district on the west side of the campus on the agb near sand hill road. Relocation is designationtied potential future public school site. More centrally ocated to where students will live and where there is currently housing development. Along sand hill road. The relocation does not mean any change of policy recommended by the planning commission on the school site. That brings us to the recommends on the application itself.
2:20 PMAt this time I wanted to make some preparatory remarks as we enter this portion of the presentation. As the board is aware, the way we are processing this development proposal is as the standard practice. It involves staff conducting environmental analyses and preparing conditions of approval and other analyses in order to help you make the findings that we're not going to have development that is detriment to health and safety welfare. And some of the findings that Mr. Bradley defined as above. the review in processing development applications, it's a regulatory process. It's not an negotiation. And I make this comment because during the planning commission and in many of the comments the public has made, they have conflated the usual regulatory land application process, and I wanted to have that clearly set forth in the public record. As you know, though, last year the board did approve amending the zone, that is used as a tool. We did receive a referral last year in September to authorize us to possibly explore this with respect to this application. We did, in fact, on October 16th of back and did present a proposed process we were asked to identify what a negotiation process would have as some of its features. What I want to communicate to the board is, in fact, we did endeavor to adhere to what was set forth, including the board having established the ad hoc committee. We have presented monthly sports to hulett on the discussions. I just submitted yesterday my tenth report. We have endeavored to have a public process so in fact, back in November 29th, we had what we described as a community listening meeting to entertain from the public what they thought would be community benefits that they thought would be worthwhile. We did conduct a meeting on November 30th with stanford to establish the ground rules for negotiation. Then later in march, March 14th, ther hall meeting that was attended by both supervisors simitian and chavez, where again we tried to update the community with respect to the status of these conversations. I did try to add appropriate milestones and provide some updates. Let me pivot to what I think is more important in this conversation, which is the substance. Stanford university did provide two offer letters, one in January of this year, and one on June 24th, right before the planning commission took it's last action. And i'm going to turn over the presentation in a moment back to Mr. Bradley, where he'll provide staff analysis of their offer letter, both in terms of the benefits that they are offering in the letter, and also the concessions that would be required in exchange for those benefits. I think the take away is that frankly the county negotiation team in stanford were very far apart. And this will be eliminated by the presentation.
2:23 PMBefore we go to the presentation, let me just ask the applicant to perhaps huddle. We do have a card from catherine palter that says applicant presentation. We've also got cards from other parts of the applicants team including jean mccown, whitney mcnair, and ellen from one of the consultants. As I indicated earlier we would like to ask you use your ten minutes to bundle those up. That's the plan if you want to put your heads together to make sure that your presentation is organized within that ten minutes. I want to give you that reminder at this time. Again, anyone who is a stanford affiliate of any other sort, whether you're faculty, staff, student, alum, whatever, perfectly welcome to speak for the minute and a half that we've got set aside. But the applicant team we ask that you coordinate and be in that ten-minute period. As is the custom of our board. Let me go back to staff and the consultants. Mr. Bradley, you're up.
2:24 PMThank you. the next slide. Looking at the development agreement offer letter summary table, that you see here prepared by the university, it's clear that nearly all the items described are, in fact, part of three different things. Part of ngoing efforts to address housing needs. That would include middle plaza projects. The first one listing 2600 beds for $1. 41 billion is part of the proposed gup. We're already required by the recommendations of approval, which would be the 1,307 workforce unit. The benefit listed as the tdm program that need to comply with the existing trips standard. This leaves about $30 million for transportation, and $138 million for schools, which reduces the total from $4. 7 billion with a 'b' to $268 million with an 'm. ' rezenneding the affordable house housing ordinance, the proposed changes and conditions and community plan would result in loss of approval that would under cut the findings needed to be made as well as eliminate important community protections. As discussed in your last attachment in your package, the public record for he escondido village is clear for student housing demand. The documented needs is for net new work houses. Moving on to middle plaza, staff addresses existing demand going back to the development occurring under the existing existing 2002 use permit. The housing and recommended for future demand from net new development. Stanford is proposing to provide 100% of the documented needs from 2172 units. Which good news. However, count staff ound that half credit, and build to adjust existing demand. The middle plazas along with smaller projects is accounted for as existing housing to serve existing housing needs. For these reasons staff believes the true number of net units offered by stanford is 1307 and will be used for comparison purposes. The proposal is 39% less than the amount as documented in the April 2018 nexus study in terms of affordable and market-rate units. The proposal provides 60% of the amount needed in the nexus study under the da offer the traffic conditions would be rolled back to the standard set in the 2000 general use permit, which focused solely on peak hour, peak direction traffic. In conclusion, under the development agreement, there is no government agreement, and recommend denial of the agreement.
2:29 PMLet me expand on this component. There were an oh couple of planning commissioners who were interested in seeing the development agreement as part of this packet. But not with standing that desire we don't have one. Our recommendation is as well as now to the board is that we approve this permit with the conditions and mitigations and other other recommended actions that are before you today and treat this as a--as our typical land use application.
Looking forward to the next steps, we have two more meetings meetings.
Can we hold questions? I know you said at the beginning there were a couple of times they asked for questions.
2:30 PMYes, thank you. I think we only have a few more page or two at most. One page. Why don't we wait a moment and i'll literally come down the row in order. And again ask that they be relatively brief so we can get to the public. I want to make sure that the applicant gets heard while all five members of the board are here and the members of the public get heard as well. Back to you, and then.
Scheduled for October 22nd. the city hall building. After that, we have the plans the third of three public hearings. Today is the first public hearing. October 22nd will be the second public hearing. November 5th will be the third and final public here, here at board chambers at 11:30.
2:31 PMAll right. questions from the board. And again if we can keep them relatively brief in clarifying and then go to the applicant, go to the public, and then come back for more questions and comments and discussion by the board. Time permitting. Ms. Ellenberg. Questions?
Yes, a couple of questions, thank you, about the process. How many times did the ad hoc committee meet with the stanford application team? You mentioned the November meeting. Was there another meeting after that?
That's correct. there was a meeting in November to establish ground rules. And then there as a meeting scheduled for, I believe April 30th, that was subsequently canceled.
Nothing between November and april, though?
2:32 PMThat's correct.
Let me--
Forgive the interruption. that is the case because there was no longer a process after the initial meeting while we were waiting or the conditions of approval. By the time the conditions of approval were produced, we ran into the circumstances that were described. Excuse the interruption, but we were all waiting for the conditions of approval during that period of time.
Got it, thank you.
That was my comment as well. was that staff, it took us awhile to finalize the conditions of approval. Those were necessary in order to establish the regulatory baseline, and therefore, understand what truly fell between the community benefits. That's why it was so important to have it down first.
I only want to sk one other question now, and i'm sure i'll have more later after hearing the public and applicant. The letter received on the 24th, did hoc committee perceive that as an opening salvo to begin negotiations, or a final afternoon.
2:33 PMI don't believe that the county team construed that as a final offer to the last question. It was one of two letters that were offered to us and then we convened as a team and analyzed and concluded that it was not much different than the letter offered in january. It was offered just as we were about to finalize actions at the planning commission. So at that time we presented the analysis that we presented to you today. To show them our respect to that, and then yet again made the point that we don't have an agreement.
2:34 PMThere were no beginning negotiations.
At that time, correct.
A slight clarification if I may. Supervisor chavez and i, and times we're formerly the at I wouldn't want people to think that supervisor chavez and I had not been contacted by the universe or in touch with them. As some of you know, as recently as September 11th, the two of us met in this building with five representatives from fanned ford university specifically at their request. Even though that was not technically a meeting of the.
2:35 PMIf.
Supervisor.
Looping those same lines. I appreciate the questions from the I went back fter the last discussion that we had here where the county executive indicated in oh many words, if you want to protect the cards, that's fine. That staff was not charged with negotiating. The he sort of just he writ rated you and fanned ford instituted negotiations.
I didn't say that constituted negotiations.
Why don't you character what you just said again.
I just want to--
We can bring out the video.
I want to be clear about what I did or didn't say.
Supervisor ellenberg asked if there were any negotiations with stanford. Then she said after the responsibilities, therefore there were none. I thought you corrected the record and said there were some because you and supervisor chavez met with the stanford folks. I'm trying to clarify before I move on to what I say here.
2:36 PMAs I said a few minutes ago, I was clarifying there were occasions when subsequent to the cancellation--the expiration of the ground rules. The ground rules expired. There was no more ability absent new ground rules to continue to have the meetings, as you heard from staff the meetings with the ad hoc community and the university were suspended. Ms. Gallegos. I'm looking to you to confirm that that is right. I was trying to make sure that we had in the record full disclosure. I didn't want people to think that supervisors chavez and I had not been in touch with the university. They reached out and asked to to meet with us and in some instances talked to us by hone. I don't want to speak for supervisor chavez. We certainly did meet with them but not as ad hockey community. But I think it's important about people not to be confused in our conversations. Just trying to provide full disclosure, supervisor. Back to you.
2:37 PMI appreciate that clarification. I'm trying to set the record straight because I didn't expect the response from the county executive last time. I wasn't prepared with the minutes and the actual motion that set this process into motion by the board of supervisors on a unanimous vote, as I recall. In any case, the minutes, according to the clerks, say that the recommendation was approved, and the october--i'm sorry, at the October 16th board meeting, according to the report to the hulett committee there after, by this same staff, it says at the October 16th board meeting the board authorized county staff to enter into a negotiation process and appoint two members of the board to serve as an ad hoc can committee providing guidance to county staff. One was direction from the administration report monthly to hulett and transportation committee in negotiations with stanford. That's this report. I didn't see anywhere in there or in the actual motion or the staff recommendation that e approved any authorization for the ad hoc committee to negotiate directly, or to seize and desist negotiations without coming back to the board. That's my take on it. And much like last time we discussed this item, i'm still in search of how did negotiation negotiations southeast and desist without a report back to the board? I went back to the staff recommendation,. Am with the clarification that you wanted a two-person ad hoc committee. If you and supervisor chavez was part but you moved the recommendation. I agree, to that particular time, October 16th, was a good one. I don't regret my vote at all. But it says that this is what this was supposed to happen. Am am if the board elected to prose there are a series of negotiating point. It's called clayfication of expectation. Housing and su and--express willingnes to include other benefits and response to and effect the jurisdiction in the gup process. Am.
2:40 PMDevelopment not covered by the conditions of the approval. Express willingness to am am am the timeline to allow negotiations to proceed and express a willingness to modify the conditions by hich stanford would bring in number. The offer is cop tin gents off beyond the environmental impact report. My question is were any of those negotiating points tendered to stanford, and did they respond by letters received in he negotiation? I'm hearing that they didn't offer the i'm hearing that there were other items by pi is there writing that date back to them? With the board of supervisors. At a point in time that I missed? I'm trying to find out how you counter offered, or if you counter offered based on the direction that the board gave originally on October 16th.
2:41 PMSo the board did form an ad hoc committee, and the county team looked to that ad hoc committee for direction. That was the way that we understood it. It was structured that we would get our guidance from that ad hoc committee. We met regularly. In fact, i'm grateful for the time of the supervisors. We regularly met weekly in response officers were provided, we did convene as a group to analyze those. Prior to that second letter, the count had communicated to stanford that if it wanted to reenter into egotiations, that there were two conditions that we felt that were important that they meet. One is to if it would be transferred we found from our perspective, the comments made in private meetings didn't necessarily match comments made in public meetings. To eliminate that, whether true or not because people have different perceptions, whether it's true or not, we felt the pest way is to if if secondly, we would a lot the physical. And to be equal to or better than that deal, and that not be contingent on a da but be contingent on something else. So we didn't get a response back. If a expressing its willingness to accept those two conditions and so am the negotiation and canceled this April April 23rd meeting. But there were many communications ouring between the county and stanford.
2:43 PMOkay. I haven't seen any document in my packet that is a response to the documents they summited. So i'm concerned about that. As to their willingness, and i'm assuming what you're alluding to or implying is that there needed to be an open pans parent public process, and stanford was unwilling to participate. As part of the motion that supervisor sum s simitian made, the public workshop near stanford university. It doesn't say contingent upon them showing up. Invites staff and elected official representatives for cities of tanford to attend nd does public, and to receive input n draft terms. Which I don't think happen based on istening to. At the point in time thement invite staff and elected officials from cities near stanford in a second meeting to receive input at a point in time in the negotiations at which proposed benefits can be identified. Five, conduct a third final agreement in conjunction with the emr mitigations which are just coming on, and recommend--i added that--and recommend addition of approval. The conclusion, prior to the planning mission public hearing on the 2018. Did the third public workshop happen before the planning commission meeting with opposed final development agreement terms and community benefits? That did not happen, did it? I'm just reading what the board ordered up. To my nowledge the board has not voided this direction. I just want to know if it happened or not. That's what i'm asking.
2:46 PMYou are correct. that's the process we outlined in the October 16th report. We did adhere to that process up to the point where we no longer had the ability to proceed. By that I mean we did have the initial meeting November 29th, where we had a community listening meeting. Then in lieu of having a meeting that is difficult to get all of the cities together in one meeting, we instead asked Mr. Mr. Brawlly to meet with all of the very well haven't just dictions, which he ask. And then we moved to the point where we didn't have the benefit development to showcase. That's where the process stopped.
2:47 PMOkay, my concern is, and i'm going to skip over paragraph six, which talks more about community benefits being done in conjunction and appropriate timing to the eir, which I tend to remember was a major provide periodic reports to the planning commission, which you said you've done. And full board. Full board. A regular-scheduled hearings. Your words. Throughout the development public input process. When did you say the process terminated? When did you say the process terminated? I'm looking for a date. It started in October when we adopted this recommendation that I just read. When did it stop?
2:48 PMTwo comments.
I'm just asking for a date so I can continue. What date?
So May I make the other comment.
I'm happy to make whatever comments you want. I just want to know what date this process, after October October 16, 2016.
The process didn't determinate, it was suspended April 15th. And then my second comment simply is that you're right, staff report said report to the board. But we saw that as being preferred at that meeting no, report to hulett. That's what we were trying to adhere to.
It says report to hulet as well. But it says to report to the full board. And you're telling me that after we ordered this work up, that in October 2018, in April of 2019 you crease and desist on negotiations. It is now October 2019. To my knowledge this is the first report to the full board a year later. But more troubling, six months after you cease and desist the negotiations, today you're coming and asking for us to reject a proposal from stanford despite the fact that it followed he direction of the board, you certainly have not apprised this board member because this is my only opportunity to convene on this subject. I'm not on the hulet committee or the ad hoc committee. I don't want to mischaracterize what ms. Ellenberberg said, but what she said it doesn't feel like there was a board of response to stanford's negotiated attempts to negotiate a proposal with us, to their offer. And i'm troubled by that. And maybe it's because I am biased in some way. In all of my professional career public and private, when someone when someone offers, it is the responsibility of the agents and principals to communicate that offer, to allow them to approve it, reject it, or counter offer. You're doing that today, a year after, for the first time. A year after negotiations were supposed to commence. That troubles me. I don't think it's okay, and i'll include here, I don't think it's okay for staff, for the administration to make a unilateral decision, dispense with the direction of the board without coming back to the board and at least letting us know that it is your preface to do so. Had you come back in April and explained whatever was going on, I don't know how I would have voted on that day or how I would have I don't know. Please continue, please discontinue, I don't know. But I was denied that opportunity. Now we're in the biggest land-use decision making process since i've been here. And I don't know how to make up I mit not be able to make up the lost opportunity cost, the I don't know what that opportunity cost is, but it feels like a lost opportunity to weigh in on a timely basis. I nii apologize. I will keep my remaining comments today to a minimum, if I make any at all. We'll leave it that that. I do preach your I hope that if nothing else it explains my concerns and my frustration with the position that I feel like i've been put in you want in in terms of the inability to re--respondto the constituents or an else.
2:53 PMSupervisor wasserman, clarifying questions at this point? Supervisor chavez?
Thank you.
I want to start where supervisor co cortese eft off, and let me say to my colleagues. In this instance i'm truly troubled by, supervisor cortese, I for one, and I think this is true for supervisor simitian, fully intended to conduct negotiations on behalf of the board. I never want to be in position where i'm extending one of you because we didn't get our work done. And in this instance I wanted to draw the attention away from the staff and mostly to myself, and mostly to joe--just kidding, but to both of us. I'm totally kidding. [laughing] but to your point, you raise a series of important points. I just want to give you my perspective on them. One is that it is true that one of the challenges waiting for the conditions of approval to come from staff so that we were better able to understand what would be benefit. I will say personally that we, like all of you, received a number of letters from stanford that asked to discuss community benefits in a--that started far below what the conditions of approval were. So what that meant was that for us to open up negotiations, we would essentially begin by negotiating the way I perceived it, by negotiating against ourselves. And in particular in the area of while we did have problems with the ground rules, and really being able to work together in the final, the most recent meeting with staff, I apologize. I meant to copy you and write to stanford, but I had trouble putting in words that we met with them. They said there were only four things that they were concerned about, but the most important thing they wanted to do was create an element of consistency.
2:55 PMCertainty.
Certainty. i'm sure that bob was writing a big note to me. Was of certainty. The challenge was what came back to us was not elements solely of certainty, but really asking us to take--i thought--taking giant steps below the conditions of approval. I feel in hat exchange where we extend one more opportunity for us to have a--i think the point that you raised, dave, about what someone starting position is a critical point. At the time we were having this discussion, not only was the offer relative to affordable housing so far below what we were looking for, but the discussions we had with he school had not been completed. I was worried about trading off the interest of children with the interest of affordable housing. I didn't think that was an appropriate place for us to start. That all being said I will say to you and to you the board in general and to you in particular, it was always our intention, and I can speak to mine personally, if possible, was to have a development agreement because of my comfort level from he city of san jose and see if that is something that we could use to get much done. The other was when the board, all of us agreed that this was a path that we should take and I believe we did our very best to live up to the spirit of what we tried to accomplish. I feel very badly with the communication with the full board. I wanted to say that before we went on. I have a question for staff, though, if I could. I'm interested in the 1985 agreement that we currently have. And i'm wondering what are the implications of that agreement being dissolved or not used any more as a basis for our partnership, relationship with stanford? I ask that because most recent letter had a part in it about I think a lack of need for services. Do we need it any more? Is it something that we should be evaluating as part of this process?
2:58 PMI think he 19 # 5 agreement is probably a separate conversation in a lot of ways. It provides a baseline framework for why they were incorporated into the city of palo alto. Back several decades ago. But I don't think that it's really directly a part of the conversation of what should happen here.
Well, the reason why i'm commenting on it is that after the stanford provision of municipal services, under a letter that I think May have come last night, there is a section of it that says that it doesn't appear that they have to provide services. My point is that if they're raising this relative to the approval, should we impact take a look at the agreement. It seems to have some precedence to at least one part of what they're sking for.
2:59 PMWe could certainly look.
Thank you. that comes to me. I'm going to try to keep my comments relatively brief and limited.
3:00 PMI'm going to ask this question, in the end. Just because i--ms. Gallegos, Mr. Bradley, the applicant for 3. 5 million square feet of development, it is the staff's recommendation before us today and the planning commission's recommendation on the 7-0 vote to give them all 3. 5 million square feet. Yes?
That's correct.
So that is your recommendation. Give the applicant everything that the applicant has asked for in the way could we go to page 15, please, of the power point. Thanks. This is the zoning ordinance of the county, yes?
3:01 PMCorrect.
Which means that it's the law we have to follow, yes?
Correct.
And I thought I heard you say earlier, Mr. Bradley, that we could not approve the project unless we can make all of these findings, is that correct?
Correct, yes.
So that means that we, in order to approve the project, we have to make a finding that the proposed use will not be detrimental to the public health, safety, or general welfare, correct?
3:02 PMCorrect.
Looking down at item number 5, the finding there is that the use will not substantially worsen traffic congestion affecting the surrounding area. So we cannot not approve the project unless we can make that finding.
That's correct.
One more time, you're requesting that the approval of the applicant.
It is the approval of 3. 5 million square feet subject to architecture approval, yes.
Okay. let's go to the applicant, colleagues. I want to make sure that we hear from them. I'll have more by way the comments and questions. Ms. Palter, have you figured out how to present? It's your ten minutes. You can use it for any permit permittation of your presentation.
3:03 PMJust to clarify, jean mccown was here speaking at the request of a faculty member who couldn't be here. He wanted it read into the record.
With the consent of my board colleagues, i'm going to mc mc mcgown has been a regular part of your application team, and has been part of the advocacy efforts for the last couple of years. We don't let folks speak on behalf of others. You've been through this process. You know how it works. I want to be flexible, but I want to follow the rules of the board. In future she'll be considered one of the development team as will you, as will m ms. Mcgown and Mr. Pierce, your paid traffic consultant.
3:04 PMShe just really wanted to offer her ability to answer questions.
Great.
Would it be okay if omeone else reads this letter if they susubmit a card.
As long as they're not double dipping on time, but a member of this team should really be part of this ten minutes.
Thank you. good afternoon resident simitian and members of the board. My name is ms. Palter. I would like to thank the committee for the time spent on our application over the past three years. We're building on a regulatory framework that allows stanford to add teaching facilities over time and comprehensively addressing environmental affects on our neighbors. Stanford addressing research as well as entrance. This will allow stand ford to invest in state state of the art in research fields such as alzheimer's disease, cancer, cyber security and climate change. I would like to talk about three sets of issues that we believe need to be resolved before achieving the path forward. One, the fewed proposed,--the housing that can only be provided through mechanism of development agreement. And ommunity benefits that can only be addressed through community developments. First the conditions of approval. Over the course of this process, we have heard that stanford is seeking a development agreement in order to limit mitigation. This is simply not true. We have committed to fully comply with all mitigation and the county's final environmental impact report. Out of more than 100 conditions of approval proposed by the county we have concerns with only three that we believe are infeasible, open ended or discourage housing development in an open campus. We believe that there are constructive ways to work together to modify these three conditions to achieve the county's policy objecttive while insuring that stanford is able to build it's new academic facilities and provide the housing we all want to see come to fruition. In the brief time that we've had to review staffs agreement, we believe we need to work this out. We have heard that stanford objects to providing more housing. This is also incorrect. As I believe you're aware stanford is proactively and voltairely constructed more than 1500 housing units as we speak. With these units combined with the number we have committed to under our development agreement proposal stanford will be dressing 130% of the housing demand. Including below-market units on stanford's campus and extending the below market rate housing. We would like to discuss our development agreement housing proposal to discuss if there are alternative ways to address the critical housing needs in the county. However, I would like to be clear on one important point. We believe that the proposed housing conditions extend beyond the legal authority of the county. That is why additional housing can and should be discussed within the construct of the development agreement. We want to provide the housing. We simply want to do it through a mechanism that resolves conflict. Third, there is an issue of benefits provided to our neighboring communities. We have heard that stanford's $4. 7 billion proposal package including our proposal of $168 million for schools and transportation improvements does not represent community benefit. No one has refuted that stanford is committed to spending this money down housing, transportation, schools, and benefit above and beyond the cost of building the academic facilities that form the occur of our project. The only disagreement is how to characterize these investments. Are they provided through existing programs as part of the project or additional benefits on top of the project? The bottom line is that regardless of how you characterize these investments, stanford is committeed to invest $4. 7 million as part of the permit and development agreement. As you know the development agreement is the tool routinely used in local land use entitlement that allows the investment. It is regularly used for large, long-term projects some local examples netflix, and gateway crossing project in santa clara. The approval of usc's plan in los angeles included a development agreement. Over the years tanford has entered ent into five agreements. That agreement is part of the approval package that has been evaluated by elected officials. That way when the decision makers are deliberating whether to approve a project or not, they have full under understanding of the benefits that can be realized in the community. We know of no applicant anywhere who would invest hundreds of millions, let aloe billions of dollars in the items the committee has requested, much of them front loaded ithout receiving assurances that will be able to construct the full amount of the facility it seeks to build. Without such predictability, the applicant would invest, and then future city councils could pass additional fees that would make the remaining facilities prohibitively expensive or impossible to build. The community is certain what benefits they will receive, and the applicant has assurances to completing their development. It is important to emphasize this is the only legislative tool that can provide such predictability. There is no other. We have heard concerns that development agreements are not transparent. That is incorrect. The first government has exactly the same transparency as the conditions of approval since both are resented to the public and evaluated in the same way by elected officials in open public hearings. There are multiple ways to structure the transparency. Stanford would be willing to use what are negotiation mechanism the county thinks best. We have heard concerns that development agreements remove all flexibility for the county to evolve future regulations. That is also incorrect. The state's development g. E. Statute recogzes there is a balance between maintaining flexibility and key areas for legislators while providing certainty to the applicant. Our letters to supervisors simitian and chavez describe this in detail. We believe we can address these concerns during negotiations. Some wonder why the agreement is needed today? The answer is that stanford did not seek a government agreement in 2000 because we were not asked at that time to provide benefits outside our academic mission anywhere near the magnitude that we're eing asked to provide today. So I think you can appreciate an appropriate need for assurances given this scale. That is why stanford use the permit and development agreement for housing and benefits for the community as well as land use predictability for stanford as a packet. We have an opportunity to support a thriving county community and stanford for the next two decades. To do that we seek to work together to create feasible conditions that stanford can implement and identify the passage of community benefits to be provided. This allows us to provide housing, transportation, schools and other benefits now while evolving our research and teaching over time to serve an ever changing world. Because of the reasons I have just laid out to you we respectfully request that after hearing from the public the county continue the hearings on the project and development hearing to a later date to allow stanford and county staff to great a development agreement to be considered at the same time for this project. We do not take this lightly. We believe if we can sit down and talk with the county we can reach a package that works for the county, the community, and stanford.
3:13 PMThank you. if you'll stay foot. Questions? Ms. Ellenberg.
Thank you for that report. you described that stanford is willing to do everything that falls within the general--with the conditions of approval, but want it to be outside of--i'm just repeating from my own education as well, but are interested in doing it in a separate agreement so that you will have assurity about your ability to fully develop the space over the terms of the development agreement, is that correct?
3:14 PMThere are two aspects of the conditions of approval. There are three that we believe that are infeasible, and then two that are having to do with housing that we're in disagreement where they belong in the conditions or development agreement. We believe that they belong in the development agreement. But yes to your over all question, that development agreement allow us to front load a lot of these benefits and still have certainty that we can abobuild our academic facilities.
And the loss to stanford is having to comply with a list of conditions without assurance that each of your subsequent projects during the length of the gup will be approved.
3:15 PMOkay. I think that's all for now. But i'm still thinking.
Supervisor wasserman.
Thank you. this is obviously on my radar. Every single day. In one way or another. Where I go back and forth, depending on who I happen to meet with r talk with is what can be accomplished in the da that can't be accomplished under the gup? I'm certainly one looking for benefits to the palo alto unified school district. I have to tell you, every time I speak with someone different, i'm less and less convinced that we can't accomplish all we want under the gup itself. And not needed n the da. I wonder you could restate--because I now you just said in your nine minutes now--your perspective on why a da is needed? I'm still confused. I'm still not convinced.
3:16 PMWell, I can give you a couple of reasons. One, as I said, we still have a disagreement that all of those--that housing could be required under the conditions of approval. The other aspect of the conditions and ordinance is that housing benefits would be provided over time. And what we've offered in our development agreement proposal, which is again, a starting point for discussion, we would provide 100% of the bmr units required by the ordinance passed by the board last fall, and 75% of all of the housing during the time when 25% of our academic facilities would be built. That something that we would feel comfortable doing because we know the remaining 75% f our academic facilities could proceed the way we all agreed to at the end of this process.
Thank you. on those two items if I may, for the chair. Thank you. The first item as far as front loading the housing. We have a housing crisis now. Building housing sooner than later, i'm all for it. What i'm not yet convinced, why can't that be just about a condition of approval, and not in a da. That's number one. Number two, you referred to the amount of housing. From the power point slide, from the staff reports and all that I heard and -mails and our meetings, and everything else, I think it's not so much a disagreement about the housing being resolved in the gup or in the da. I think there is a fundamental question on the number of houses to be built. And I orget which age it was in here, but the delta between what i'm hearing from staff here and what i'm hearing from stanford bankly is stanford is asking for credit of housing they have built and are building, and us saying, the mitigation for this new proposed project is like i'm off, but 2,000 new units. You get to the same 2,000 by allowing for 1400 or 1500 that have been built or recently built. And I believe staff is saying proper mitigation for the highs of the development is 2,000 new units. Rudies agreeing ith the number of units or if they're equired in the gup verse the--versus the da. Or both.
3:18 PMFirst I would say we haven't had a chance to talk about this to see where it is. What we've done in ur first application was recognize the incredible investment stanford is making right now. Stanford is building 1300 apartments for our existing graduate students who will move out of the community, freeing up housing there, and we have under construction 1500 faculty staff unities. Stanford has been pro active to bring housing supply that will open up in the next year. This is a credit towards market rate housing of 865 units. That's the disagreement there. But again, this is something we want to talk about. But it seemed reasonable to us that if we're going to spend $1 billion on 1300 apartments, it should be recognized in this calculous some how.
3:19 PMOkay. i'm going to stop there.
Supervisor--coming this way, please. Well, i'm going to stay on this point before I go to supervisor cortese. Ms. Palter, on the housing issue that supervisor wasserman asked about, my understanding from staff is that staff after looking at the nexus study concluded that in order to mitigate the housing demand associated with 9,610 new folks on campus, we needed to see 2172 new units of housing. Misdemeanomr. bradley and ms. gallegos that correct?
3:20 PMThat is from the nexus study.
I'm told that you're challenging the 2172 because you don't agree with the methodology. Is that the basis that you don't think that we can require the 2172 units, or is there another basis.
We've never seen a requirement where an applicant has been asked to build market housing.
3:21 PMThen you asked for a credit for half of the units that are being built at escondido village. In both the application submitted three or four years ago, and in not once but twice your comments to the planning commission, you acknowledged that those housing units are to meet existing demand from students. Am I remembering that correctly.
That's correct.
Okay so your position is that housing you chose to build to meet existing demand from students should be used to mitigate future demand from workforce folks who have not yet arrived, s that your position?
That's correct.
Okay. that's all I need. That's why I was taken aback by the fact that you said that you were committed to invest $4. 7 billion in the future because $1 billion of that is development that you already have already done to mitigate impacts from prior development opposed to money you will be spending in the future to mitigate future impacts of workforce development. So that's the--
3:22 PMThat student housing was not required s a mitigation. That's something that we proactively decided to do to bring those students on campus that frees up the places where they're living now which is where the workforce have move into.
Dually noted. for the record you're saying that housing you chose to build to meet existing student demand should count as mitigation for development not yet authorized, and workforce participants who have not yet arrived on campus going forward. Okay. That part is clear.
The other thing I would like to add with these questions, what i'm explaining is what we put forward in june, and what we really are looking forward to is to have a chance to talk about these issues. In a vacuum we're trying to put forward what we think meets the needs of the county in the best way possible. There could be another way to shift these resources and do it a different way. What we want is a chance to talk about it.
3:23 PMMs. palter, i'm going to ask you a question, and normally I couldn't get this person. Have I ever denied request from the university to meet with you all? Ever?
No.
How about supervisor cha degrees as the second member of the ad hoc team.
No.
Have you been able to meet with staff.
Less frequently than we could before.
And you had five members of your team who met with supervisor chavez and me just last month, es?
And she asked for a letter, which letter you provided, yes?
3:24 PMMm-hmm.
I just don't want folks to think that there are no communication when I think people have been working pretty hard on all sides to make sure that we got quality time together. All right. I'm going to see if there are any other questions. Supervisor cortese, you've been waiting patiently. Your light is on.
One question, ms. palter, earlier when I was talking about the process and so forth, and asking some questions about that, I read the clarification and motions made by supervisor simitian. The first bullet point says increase the proposed level of affordable housing funding, let me back up. It says given that stanford's administration recommends proceeding with negotiations only if stanford first agrees in writing to incorporate all the following elements. First bullet, increase the proposed level of affordable housing funding to exceed the level of affordable housing resulting from the housing ordinances. It doesn't appear to me that you did that. I would have asked the same question had has been brought to the board last april. And to my colleagues' credit on the ad hoc committee who have attempted to negotiate, and to supervisor chavez's comment not wanting to negotiate against ourselves, this being the direction of the board, can you explain, and I release it's a similar question to supervisor ssupervisor--simitians, why your opener wouldn't satisfy bullet point number one.
3:25 PMA little bit of history on the impact fee ordinance passed last year. The nexus study brought forward a maximum fee that could be charged of $143 a square foot. That would result in 900 units. After some discussion of the board it went back to staff. Staff came back with a recommendation of a fee of 575 units. That's what was approved by the board last fall. At that time there was a clause very important to the board that if stanford came forward with a proposal of below market rate units, that met or exceeded the requirements of the ordinance, the ordinance could be rescinded. That was part of he whole package. When stanford made its proposals both in January and in june, we showed with math how we were able to do that. How we were able to not just pay the fee over time, but front load it, build the you wants, and show that it was more of higher value than the ordinance passed in the fall.
3:27 PMWhatever it's worth, it doesn't appear to me, and gain, i'm not part of an negotiation be team, but I would have said this to you had I been, it doesn't appear to me that you opened up the negotiations at any point by expressing a willingness--this is what this is all asked for, not the number of units--but he willingness to provide housing to exceed the housing ordinances. I just have to say irrespective of all my concerns about process and as you heard earlier, it's problematic for me to, or it would be, to go forward even today with ood faith negotiations as a board member unless these five bullet points are expressed in writing by stanford essentially verbatim. We said in this is what we want. You can't start any negotiation without both sides at least agreeing to what the expectations are. If it's already been said by or implied by some of my colleagues, I think by putting specific housing numbers out that are different and don't appear to exceed the level of affordable housing in the ordinance, it is very difficult to proceed to step two of the negotiation or to talk about all these other things in these other paragraphs like school impact transportation, sustainability open space and so forth. So I think it's a big obstacle, and I want to express that because this is probably my only chance to do that in a public setting. Thank you, Mr. Simitian.
3:28 PMI should go back and check. I think we May have responded by letter saying that we were willing to engage on all of those points. We can go back and verify that. But thank you for your comment.
3:29 PMI'm just going by what we have before us today.
I will have comments later about the da process, but I want to hold off on those. Mispalter, however, I noted that even if it wasn't apparent to you, you did have a minute or so left at the end of your remarks before, you said you would take questions. If you want to bring some other member of your team up, whether that's ms. Mcnair,, I want to make sure you get your full ten minutes. I'll let you look beseechingly at your colleagues.
Did you say that ms. Mcnair.
I see her standing. and if she wants to come forward and offer a thought or offer herself up as a resource, that's fine. After those questions she may. Or May not. She's moving this way. Thank you. That's good.
3:30 PMMy name is whitney mcnair. i'm the direct of stanford housing. I manage the housing once it's built. My role requires me to have a pulse on the needs, wants and desires of faculty and staff on all housing related matters. I do this by meeting with many faculty and starve, learning about them and through surveys to under their needs. While there is public discussion about what and wear stanford's housing should be built, there seems to be a disconnect about what the potential residents of the housing want or need when looking for a home. Not everyone wants to live in employer-pr-provided housing. We have workforce make choices about where to live on a whole host of reasons. They want to live close to their caregiver, where their spouse can live close to work site, because of schools they want to attend or a large yard. Market rents around the campus are the highest in the bay area. The requirement to build 70% of the market rate housing on campus is only exacerbateing the problem for our workforce. When it omes to housing, stanford's opulation I urge you to pause and really learn what will appeal to stanford's workforce. Housing is much more than a number of you wants to satisfy a condition of approval.