Frequently Asked Questions

The Vallco Town Center project has evolved through years of community engagement on the future of Vallco. We are creating an exciting new town center for Cupertino that brings shops, homes, offices, open space and entertainment together in a neighborhood that contributes to the economic health of the City, creates new affordable housing opportunities and adds parks and public spaces for all to enjoy.

The retail market has changed drastically with the predominance of online shopping. Industry experts, including regional experts and independent consultants to the city, have agreed that Vallco could not continue as a traditional retail-only mall. Today’s retail settings must deliver more offerings to a more diverse community, and forward-looking plans require a more balanced approach to development that also addresses the need for housing, open space creation and economic and environmental sustainability.

Senate Bill 35 went into effect on January 1, 2018, as a response to the state’s housing crisis and one of its main causes—the failure of many jurisdictions to approve housing development resulting in record low inventory being added to the market at a time of record growth. With SB 35, the state aims to increase the supply of market rate and below-market rate housing in California, by creating a streamlined “ministerial” approval process for projects that meet the requirements of the legislation.

The law is tailored to cities and counties in California that failed to meet their Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA), which is the number of housing units each city or county must provide in its state-mandated Housing Element. This is the case for Cupertino.

Visit the About SB35 page for more details.

A lot has changed since we proposed The Hills at Vallco in 2015. While housing was sorely needed, the demand for it has dramatically increased. In addition, the City of Cupertino’s 2017 Speaker Series confirmed that the housing shortage is real and that Cupertino, along with some other cities in the region, has not done and is not doing enough to address it. A thoughtfully conceived mixed-use plan at Vallco can provide solutions to these issues.

Cupertino currently provides only one affordable housing unit for every 14 of its low-income jobs — one of the most egregious ratios in the Bay Area – and it’s only getting worse: two thirds of Cupertino’s own “below market rate” rental housing stock, totaling 142 units, will convert to market rates within the next decade, and the City has yet to permit a single low or very low income unit from its now 3-year old Regional Housing Needs Allocation.

SB 35 can help alleviate these housing and affordability problems so the well-being of the State and its regions can be safeguarded. Vallco is a substantial part of that solution.

In order to make Vallco Town Center an economically viable project and in order to sustain the significant requirement of affordable housing under SB 35 and to support the retail environment, the project has a 1.81 million square feet office component.

Office space is needed for two main reasons. In order to achieve Vallco’s second life is as an experience-based, people-friendly destination, a daytime population is needed to give retail businesses the customers they need to succeed in this new digital age. That means providing Cupertino residents more housing near places of work.

Secondly, office is needed in order to make Vallco Town Center an SB 35-compliant economically viable project. SB 35 requires 50% of the housing onsite must be affordable. In this project, that means 1201 designated affordable units. Since there is no government subsidy, 1.81 million square feet of office is needed to pay for the affordable housing. In addition, office also required to subsidize the retail component.

The Vallco Town Center plans include approximately 400,000 square feet of retail and entertainment uses on the site. The project will rejuvenate the vibrant retail scene at Vallco and create a true downtown.

We are not yet accepting reservations for housing units. If you’d like to be included on a list for future outreach and have your name placed on the interest list please email info@revitalizevallco.com.

Demolition of Vallco Shopping Mall began in October 2018 and will continue through much of 2019, preparing the site for future construction of an exciting town center featuring shopping, housing, office, open space and entertainment uses. Visit our construction page for regular updates.Visit our Construction at Vallco page for more details.