Tonight, 12/12 – Mountain View Council decision on North Bayshore housing

Update: Mountain View City Council voted unanimously to approve the North Bayshore Precise Plan allowing nearly 10,000 units of housing near Google. As the next step, landowners including Google will come forward with their plans.

Tonight, on Tuesday December 12 Mountain View City Council will take a deciding vote on allowing nearly 10,000 units of housing in North Bayshore where Google is headquartered.

Housing is badly needed in an area where job growth has far outstripped housing, the  deep housing shortage makes the region the least affordable in the nation, and is motivating up to 40% of residents to consider leaving the area.  Environmental study of the area shows that housing near jobs is likely to reduce driving per person.

Tonight, Council members will need to refine its decision about the amount of affordable housing to require (the staff report is here). The City Council recently set a requirement across the city for 15% of units to be affordable for low-income residents, after a new state law clarified that it was legal to require developers to offer below-market-rate units in rental housing.  The North Bayshore plan allows developers to build more densely in return for varying tiers of “community benefits” including transportation, local school contributions, and land dedication for local schools.

Mountain View City staff is recommending keeping the Tier 1 bonus level at 15% affordable housing (where it was before, and now the same as the base level required everywhere in the city) along with additional benefits in transportation, local school contributions, or optional land dedication for local schools; and keeping the Tier 2 bonus level at 20% affordable with the requirement for land dedication for schools.

At least one council member has been encouraging a pause to do an additional study to check whether it is feasible to require a higher level of affordable housing the Precise Plan area.  But the plan has been in the works for many years, and a pause to do more studies will delay the construction of housing.Historic moment

The decision about housing in North Bayshore is one of the most important decisions that will be made in the region about housing and transportation.

Following years and months of discussion and debate, things seem likely to go smoothly this evening. If you are in or near Mountain View, come to this historic meeting. The main session starts at 6:30pm, and this item is likely to be up around 7pm. Or send your thoughts to the Mountain View City Council.

Mountain View City Council

Ken Rosenberg <>,
Pat Showalter <>,
Lenny Siegel <>,
John McAlister <>,
Margaret Abe-Koga <>,
Chris Clark <>,
Lisa Matichak <>