San Jose moves forward with plans to build 32,000 housing units

For the first time in over a decade, the city of San Jose says new housing will be built in the near future. The North San Jose development will add over 30,000 homes and will be located near public transit stations. 

The agreement to build more housing in San Jose was approved in 2005, but Santa Clara County and neighboring cities sued to stop it. They wanted more research done, but now Mayor Sam Liccardo says they’re all on the same page and ready to go.

"Well, we have something to celebrate this Christmas. We had planned to build tens of thousands of units of housing in North San Jose, much of it affordable," said Liccardo.

The City of San Jose announced Sunday that its plan to add 32,000 housing units is moving forward. 

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The biggest issue in the lawsuit was the traffic and congestion new housing would create. But, with homelessness becoming a growing concern in the South Bay, all sides agree making housing more available needs to be prioritized.

"So, coming to an agreement with the county is finally going to allow us to build housing, particularly the affordable housing that’s near transit. The kind of housing that won’t create a lot more traffic because we have a light rail line and a BART station nearby," Liccardo said.   

Twenty percent of the units will be designated as affordable housing units. It’ll also include more than 25 million square feet of office and industrial space, three million square feet of retail and commercial space, and 1,000 hotel rooms.  

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"Transit-oriented development is really our future…make our community more sustainable and keep people out of cars, so as to not trap people in traffic for an hour or more in their commute. So, the difference here, is how we’re building," said Liccardo.   

The new housing will be built along the transit corridor along First Street and near the Berryessa BART station. 

In 2020, San Jose voters approved Measure E, which generated $110 million last year alone, and those funds will be used to help pay for the new housing.  

As a result of this new housing project, the I-880 and Montague Expressway intersection will also be improved. The new agreement is expected to get final approval from the city council on Tuesday.