I Support Measure D, the Revitalization of Vallco

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  • I support the Measure D, the Vallco Town Center Specific Plan Initiative, to revitalize Vallco into a vibrant mixed-use town center.

In order to help residents fully understand Measure D, the Vallco Town Center Initiative, and its potential contributions to Cupertino, a variety of specific assessments have been prepared to offer a deeper dive on specific areas. Below, please find key findings from each of the analyses prepared to date, along with links to the full reports and additional resources.

To help residents more fully understand the fiscal contributions of the Town Center Initiative, a complete economic analysis of the revitalization as proposed in the initiative has been completed, along with a synopsis. This analysis, which was completed by an independent consultant, found that if approved, the initiative will bring both significant one-time and recurring economic benefits to Cupertino.

Among the findings in the analysis are:

  • Upon build out, the revitalization of Vallco as envisioned in the Town Center Initiative will generate approximately $6.6 million in new ongoing tax revenues to the City of Cupertino.
  • The City of Cupertino will receive approximately $14.7 million in one-time tax revenues from the development and construction of the revitalization of Vallco.
  • Once completed and in operation, the revitalization of Vallco is anticipated to directly generate 8,264 permanent, full-time jobs, approximately $1.1 billion in additional annual employee compensation, and $1.8 billion in additional annual economic output above current economic conditions.
  • A total contribution of over $50 million, in addition to the payment of all legally required development fees and not including new annual property and parcel tax revenue, will be made to Cupertino’s schools and include a variety of benefits and amenities.
  • The revitalization of Vallco is anticipated to generate an estimated $19 million of property tax revenue to support vital community services like the local school districts, Santa Clara County Library, the Central Fire Protection District and Santa Clara County.
  • This $3 billion redevelopment will include $549.6 million in community benefits, including 33 acres of parks and squares, school benefits, recycled water, transit benefits and community uses within the new Town Center, such as a community center, banquet hall, outdoor performance venue and children’s park, among many others.

As a result, this analysis demonstrates that the Town Center Initiative will enhance the Cupertino community’s economic success and support many of the services most important to residents. We are proud that this assessment confirms what we already knew – that the Town Center Initiative will bring success not only to Vallco but to Cupertino as well.

In order to understand and plan for the potential effects of the Vallco Town Center Specific Plan Initiative, we conducted an Environmental Assessment (EA) of the revitalization that guided the preparation of the Vallco Town Center Specific Plan.

This is a comprehensive analysis consisting of more than 2,000 pages of environmental review. Conducted by a leading environmental consulting firm, this EA is based on work that was done in the City-led California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) review prior to the submission of the Town Center Specific Plan as a ballot initiative. The full EA may be viewed at this link. You may also view a synopsis of the EA here.

In order to ensure our immediate neighborhood, city and region are protected from any potential project impacts, the Town Center Initiative purposely included 38 environmental design features (EDFs) that were established by the EA to serve as mitigation measures for potential environmental effects.

We are not required to conduct an EA as part of the initiative drafting process, and no other initiative in Cupertino has completed environmental review. However, it was important to us that what was being proposed took into consideration potential environmental effects and provided appropriate mitigations, and that Cupertino residents with technical questions can find answers.

Among the key findings in the EA are:

  • Substantial and ongoing contributions will be made to support necessary transportation infrastructure designed to improve other traffic in Cupertino that is unrelated to the revitalization, like the $30 million investment being made in the I-280 freeway, especially the Wolfe interchange.
  • The Vallco Town Center Specific Plan implements a Transportation Demand Management Plan that would mandate trip reductions from the project, such as the requirement that nearly 50 percent of all office employees will be prohibited from driving alone to or from work, and establish severe financial penalties for failure to comply.
  • Traffic will be mitigated so that any increase in delay of the affected intersections city-wide is less than four seconds per vehicle on average.
  • After implementation of the EDFs, all but two of the redevelopment’s impacts would be reduced to less than significant: one is related to an air quality impact resulting from future residents’ daily use of things like cleaning solvents and hair spray, and the other is related to noise during construction. Notably, the EDFs eliminate all significant traffic impacts.
  • The Vallco Town Center Specific Plan in the Town Center Initiative includes additional extraordinary EDFs, like the requirement for a 30-acre rooftop park irrigated by recycled water, that go beyond what would be required by CEQA in order to provide unparalleled environmental design.

In compliance with CEQA, the City completed a Notice of Preparation (NOP) period that allowed for public comment on the scope of the EA. During this time, the City also hosted a public scoping meeting which was well attended. The City collected and cataloged all comments received during the NOP period with the intent of addressing each one under the CEQA report. Our comprehensive environmental review completes this requirement by analyzing all public comments received by the City. A summary of all NOP comments received, where in the EA the comment is addressed, and which EDF or community benefit applies to the comment, may be found here.

The Town Center Specific Plan will finally allow for a vibrant and sustainable Town Center for Cupertino, and with implementation of the Town Center Initiative’s EDFs, it can also be done in a way that will preserve our environment and quality of life.

During the CEQA process for The Hills at Vallco, which preceded the Initiative, the City of Cupertino prepared a detailed Water Supply Assessment pursuant to California Senate Bill 610. This report is provided to supplement the analysis contained in the EA.

Conducted by the California Water Service, this Water Supply Assessment concluded that throughout the 20-year period studied (2015 – 2035), there will be adequate water supplies to meet projected demands of the redevelopment as proposed. Additionally, all needs of all existing customers and other anticipated future customers for a normal, single dry year and multiple dry year conditions will be able to be met.

Measure D would guarantee more than $50 million in benefits to Cupertino schools, including a state-of-the-art Innovation Center for local students located within The Hills at Vallco, a new facility for the local adult education program and a $20 million cash contribution, including the establishment of a $1 million fund for the 8th Grade Yosemite Experience.

In addition, Measure D would guarantee new annual tax revenues of $3 million to the Fremont Union High School District and $1.2 million to the Foothill-De Anza Community College District. Read the donation agreements for Fremont Union High School District and Cupertino Unified School District.

As a part of the CEQA process, a thorough analysis of the proposed revitalization’s enrollment and fiscal impacts on Cupertino’s schools was prepared at the request of the City. Support of Cupertino’s schools is an important component of Measure D, and the analysis finds that the proposed redevelopment will have a positive impact on the school districts and enhance the learning environment in the community.

In March, the Vallco Town Center Specific Initiative, is a ballot measure that would ensure a long overdue revitalization of the dying Vallco Mall in Cupertino. The measure will seek to revitalize the nearly vacant mall into a mixed-use Town Center as called for in Cupertino’s community-created General Plan and confirmed by the City’s independent analysis under Elections Code 9212.

The full text of the Vallco Town Center Specific Plan Initiative can be found here.

The full text of the Measure D initiative can be found here.

A Santa Clara County Superior Court ruled that three ballot argument statements submitted for Measure C by Steven Scharf, Anne Brooke Ezzat, Xiangchen Xu and Aravind Balakrishnan are “false and/or misleading.” The ruling stated that “The Court cannot allow the factually inaccurate statements to stand,” therefore all three statements will be removed from the Measure C ballot arguments and refrained from use on all future election materials.

Two separate Santa Clara County Superior Court Judges have independently ruled that Measure C will raise building heights in Cupertino’s residential neighborhoods to 45 feet, or four stories. In addition, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals reviewed the case and denied an emergency appeal from Measure C sponsors on the issue. The court rulings all support the conclusions of the City of Cupertino, the City’s outside legal counsel, and third-party independent experts, who have each determined that Measure C increases building heights in residential neighborhoods, negatively impacting 75 percent of the city.

Read the full text of the Santa Clara County Superior Court ruling on Measure C.

Read the press release: Judge Rules Measure C Ballot Argument Statements are False and Misleading.