Wieckowski's Santa Clara housing bill passes state Assembly

SB 680 allows Santa Clara to go forward with unique 'agrihood' project

August 24, 2016

Sacramento – State Senator Bob Wieckowski’s (D-Fremont) urgency bill to modify the terms of a sale between the state Department of General Services and the Santa Clara Housing Authority passed the state Assembly today on a bipartisan vote.  Senate Bill 680, which will allow an affordable housing project to move forward in the city of Santa Clara, now heads to the Senate for a final concurrent vote.

“This bill enables Santa Clara to move forward with an important project to provide affordable housing for seniors and veterans, as well as an innovative agrihood component for the residents who will live in the development,” said Wieckowski, a member of the Senate’s Transportation and Housing Committee.  “This is a long-awaited project with an element that suits the site’s previous use as an agricultural research extension center.”

In 2005, the Santa Clara Redevelopment Agency agreed to purchase the property, which was the former site of the University of California’s Bay Area Research and Extension Center (BAREC). The Core Companies was selected by the city council last fall to develop the site.  Neighborhood activists spearheaded the push for the agrihood component, an urban farm within the development, to bring together the multi-generational residents who will reside at the site.

SB 680 will allow residents, city staff, and The Core Companies sufficient time to design a project that the people of Santa Clara have been working to see for more than 10 years, Santa Clara Vice-Mayor Teresa O’Neill noted as the bill moved through the Assembly.

Nearly 100 supporters of the project have signed onto a new Change.org petition at www.tinyurl.com/scagrihood.

Senator Wieckowski represents the 10th Senate District, which includes northeast Santa Clara County and southern Alameda County.