By Robert Haugh
On Tuesday, the City Council had a study session on the El Camino Real Specific Plan.
There were a lot of concerns about how major development on El Camino Real will change Santa Clara. The plan allows for six-story structures.
We heard a lot of comments from Council members and the public about how high-rise developments will cause a “canyon effect” and impact existing neighborhoods.
We also heard concerns about how new developments need to have enough parking to keep cars from spilling into local neighborhoods.
The plan projects as many as 1,200 affordable housing units in the El Camino Real Focus Area over the next 20 years. That means as many as 8,000 total housing units could be built. That’s almost four times the amount in the current general plan for the Focus Area.
The plan will come back in June for City Council consideration.
Community Development Director Andrew Crabtree revealed an interesting thing. He said that the massive Mariani development on the El Camino looks like it’s been shelved. Crabtree said the applicant has not submitted any information in the last two years.
We’ve written a lot about the massive Mariani development. They’ve had a lot of consultants over the last few years, like Harbir Bhatia, Kevin Moore and lobbyist/publisher Miles Barber.
We’ll be watching to see if they come back to life with the new City Council. They didn’t have the votes with the former City Council majority who thought the project was too dense and the lobbyists were asking the City to waive lots of fees and obligations.
For more information about the El Camino Real Specific Plan, you can go to this website.