San José, Calif. — Nov 17, 2021 — Last night, the City Council of San José voted unanimously to amend the City’s General Plan to make land-use designations and zoning changes that support a public-serving vision for Coyote Valley. These amendments are consistent with prior public and private investment in conservation and agriculture for climate resilience across the region.
Yesterday’s vote fulfills the promise made when, in 2018, more than 70 percent of San José voters approved Measure T, which included funding for the conservation of northern Coyote Valley. Yesterday’s vote ensures that public investment can be built upon through further land conservation, rather than undermined by industrial development in the middle of lands designated for climate resiliency.
Joint Statement from Walter Moore, president and CEO of Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) and Andrea Mackenzie, general manager of Open Space Authority of Santa Clara Valley:
“Yesterday’s bold, unanimous vote to support the continued conservation of Coyote Valley represents the foresight of the San José City Council, led by Mayor Liccardo, to meet the needs of the 1.1 million people of the tenth largest city in the U.S. As the City’s close partners in this effort, the Open Space Authority and Peninsula Open Space Trust applaud yesterday’s action.
“With the vote to amend the General Plan, San José unequivocally renews its commitment to an enlightened ‘smart growth’ approach that optimizes land use and brings the priorities of the City, the people and nature together around a shared vision. Smart growth puts jobs and housing where today’s workforce wants to be, rather than encouraging further sprawl which leads to traffic, pollution and expensive city infrastructure.
“Investing in natural infrastructure like Coyote Valley is an innovative and responsible choice for the people of San José, the environment and the economy. As we learned in 2017, the cost of flooding and rebuilding our communities after the fact is so much higher than the cost of proactively building resilience back into our landscape.
“Protecting Coyote Valley benefits all who live here – people and wildlife. Clean air, fresh water, a sustainably healthy and functional ecosystem, and the ability to easily access recreational opportunities, are benefits that all of us will experience from a protected Coyote Valley.
“We applaud the Mayor, the San José City Council and the City’s planning staff for enabling our existing public-private partnership to continue its work on the ground to get our landscapes and communities ready for our new climate normal.”
The Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority conserves the natural environment, supports agriculture, and connects people to nature, by protecting open spaces, natural areas, and working farms and ranches for future generations. Since 1993, the Authority has protected over 28,000 acres of open space, natural and working areas, watersheds, and wildlife habitat – providing ecologically friendly outdoor recreation and preserving the natural beauty and environmental health of the Santa Clara Valley. Visit openspaceauthority.org for more information.
POST protects open space on the Peninsula and in the South Bay for the benefit of all. As a private nonprofit land trust, POST has been responsible for saving more than 80,000 acres since its founding in 1977. POST works with private landowners and public agencies to connect people and nature. Visit openspacetrust.org for more information.
Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) protects open space on the Peninsula and in the South Bay for the benefit of all. Since its founding in 1977, POST has been responsible for saving more than 80,000 acres as permanently protected land in San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties. Learn more