|FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
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with any additional questions.
|1. What prompted the Board to create a land development proposal?
The need to generate ongoing unrestricted revenue to offset the rising costs impacting school districts throughout the state, including contributions to state pension programs and healthcare, which are increasing at an exponential rate.
|2. How can CUHSD increase revenue?
By law, school districts are restricted to the following mechanisms for revenue enhancement:
- Charging fees in accordance with the Civic Center Act for the community use of school facilities;
- Leasing unused properties;
- Levying a Parcel Tax which must be approved by a two-thirds majority of voters; and
- Fundraising through an educational foundation.
|3. How did CUHSD identify this opportunity?
In September of 2016, the Board directed that the District initiate a study of our potential to generate ongoing unrestricted revenue from a variety of sources. It was concluded that the District owns an oddly shaped and currently under-utilized strip of land that could be repurposed to much better serve student needs.
|4. Why this piece of land?
- The District currently uses the land to house our district office, bus lot, maintenance yard, and The Camden Post-Secondary Academy.
- This is an interim location for the Camden Post-Secondary Academy and analysis for where and when to relocate this program is already underway.
- Last year CUHSD implemented a plan to decentralize maintenance operations to the school sites, greatly reducing the needs for a centralized maintenance yard.
- The land is an awkwardly narrow strip that widens at either end and separates two neighborhoods of single-family homes. The value of this land is high, while its shape makes its potential utilization for student learning very low.
| 5. What will happen to the District Office?
Now that the narrow portion of the land is successfully rezoned to RN, the District is working to exchange that land for the Heritage Office Complex at the corner of Winchester and Campbell Avenue. Although negotiations continue to move forward for the self-storage facility, plans for a memory care/childcare facility are on hold and the District office is staying at its current location for at this time.
| 6. What considerations have guided the Board in creating this initiative?
The Board, as the fiscal stewards of the District, wants to ensure that all land use at this site meets the goal of maximizing revenue without negatively impacting the existing neighborhood with regard to:
- School enrollment;
- Public services such as fire and police;
- Building height and view scapes; and
- Surrounding homeowner property values.
| 7. What is "zoning?" What is a "General" Plan?
- “Zoning” is the process of dividing land into zones within which certain land uses are permitted or prohibited. For example, houses cannot be built on land zoned for commercial buildings.
- A “General” Plan is a broad planning guideline expressing a city’s future development goals. It must express the vision, goals, and objectives of the city taking into consideration eight different elements: land use, housing, circulation, conservation, noise, safety, open space, and environmental justice.
| 8. What is the zoning of the identified piece of land?
Currently the land has a General Plan designation of PQP (Public Quasi-Public). It is a land use designation the City of San Jose uses to “protect” land for public use. The PQP zoning includes allowable uses such as schools, colleges, corporation yards, homeless shelters, libraries, fire stations, water treatment facilities, convention centers and auditoriums, museums, hospitals, governmental offices and airports.
To implement our mixed use development proposal, our General Plan amendment application requests that a portion of the land be rezoned to CIC to enable the development of self-storage, and RN to enable the residential housing. The land where the District Office currently resides will be kept PQP because the proposed memory care and daycare development are allowable land uses under the PQP zoning.
| 9. What steps has the Board taken to date?
- The Board initiated a holistic assessment of all CUHSD’s property to determine opportunities to increase unrestricted revenue.
- A comprehensive mixed-use land development proposal was created.
- An application to Amend the City of San Jose’s General Plan to accommodate the mixed-use development proposal was submitted.
- Community meetings have been held to inform the community, get feedback on the proposal, and secure community support.
- CUHSD received close to 900 letters of support from community members. There has been no organized opposition to this proposal.
- The proposal was endorsed by dozens of community leaders who have hailed it as “smart development” and complemented CUHSD’s community outreach activities.
- At the City of San Jose’s Planning Commission meeting of November 7, 2018, the Commission voted to recommend approval of our General Plan amendment application to the City Council.
- At the City of San Jose’s Council Meeting of December 11, 2018, city council members voted unanimously to approve the District’s General Plan amendment application.
- Negotiations with Robson Homes and the owners of the Heritage Villiage office property have largely concluded.