The project site is at 231 Grant Avenue in the City of Palo Alto. The project site is approximately 1.4 acres bounded by Park Boulevard, Grant Avenue, and Birch Street. The project site contains an approximately 6,800-square-foot office building completed in 1956 and an associated parking area. The site is owned by the County and the existing office building currently houses the Santa Clara County Office of the Public Defender. The project site is on County-owned property but within the incorporated area of the City of Palo Alto.
The 231 Grant Educator Workforce Housing (the proposed project) is currently sponsored by the County of Santa Clara, Facebook, the City of Palo Alto, and participating school districts in Santa Clara County.
The proposed project would demolish the existing 6,800-square-foot office building at the project site and would construct a new four-story building, totaling approximately 112,000 square feet, on the site. The buildings would be developed with 110 residential units. These units would be intended to serve teachers and other full-time staff from participating school districts in Santa Clara County and from certain geographic districts in southern San Mateo County1. Approximately 2,000 square feet of community space, including a lounge, activity room and laundry, would be provided for residents’ use, as well as management offices and approximately 1,200 square feet of “flex space” which could be utilized as a café or other retail or commercial use.
An at-grade parking structure with double car stackers would provide 112 parking spaces and a secure bicycle parking room would be provided with capacity for 134 bicycles. Approximately 5,600 square feet of open public space would be provided within three outdoor plaza areas, each centered around an existing mature tree (palm, camphor, and redwood, respectively) that would be retained as part of the project.
The project is anticipated to utilize modular construction methods; however, the use of traditional construction methods will also be analyzed as an alternative to the proposed project.
 In the event units are not filled by school employees, then units may be offered to public safety employees or nonprofit employees.
Project Approval Process
The County would serve as the lead agency for compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and as the approval authority for the project. In addition to CEQA’s required public notice and comment procedures, the County plans to hold meetings in Palo Alto to respond to questions and seek community input about the project. The County Board of Supervisors would be responsible for making the required CEQA findings and making the final decision whether to approve the project. If approved, the County Building Official would review the project plans for compliance with state building codes and would be responsible for reviewing and approving the various building permits. Since the project is on County-owned land and is for a public purpose, the project is immune from city zoning and building regulations pursuant to Government Code sections 53090-53091.
For Your Review
A Notice of Preparation has been prepared in compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) for your review. Please send your written comments by Wednesday, Janaury 6, 2021 to:
County of Santa Clara Facilities and Fleets Department
Attention: Emily Chen
2310 North First Street, Suite 200
San Jose CA 95131
Virtual Public Scoping Meeting
The County will be preparing an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the proposed project. The purpose of this meeting was to present the proposed project, share the upcoming next steps, and to obtain input regarding what the environmental analysis should consider. There will be future meetings at which the public will have the opportunity to provide comments about the project unrelated to the scope of the EIR.
Date and Time: Wednesday, December 16, 2020 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.,
View the presentation, here
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