The developer is requesting an amendment to the city’s Urban Service Area (USA). A city’s USA designates land that is served by urban services (police, fire, water and sanitation) or that is proposed to be served by urban services in the near future. This is an important tool in fighting sprawl and encouraging orderly city growth, since land must be annexed to a city’s USA before urban-scale development is allowed. The amendment being proposed to accommodate the North Gilroy Neighborhood District project is completely unnecessary because at present the city doesn’t need any additional housing as it has enough land already within its USA for development.
The city claims processing the request now allows it to prepare for possible future housing demand. However, that doesn’t add up when you consider that Gilroy currently has a 14-year supply of residential land.
Recently, Julie submitted comments on the project’s Draft Environmental Impact Report. In her letter, Julie identified three major areas of concern regarding the project’s compliance with CEQA, including the city’s ability to adequately mitigated for the loss of farmland which comprises over two-thirds of the project site. Read Julie’s full letter here.
On behalf of Committee for Green Foothills, Julie will continue to speak up for responsible growth and protect our county’s farmland from unnecessary sprawl.