Stanford proposes $3.4B investment in new housing. It still may not be enough.

Over a quarter of new units to be below market-rate

Jun.June 25, 2019 10:30 AM
Stanford plans to add up to 2.275 million square feet of academic facilities over the next two decades. (Credit: iStock)

Stanford plans to add up to 2.275 million square feet of academic facilities over the next two decades. (Credit: iStock)

After suing its local county board over affordable housing requirements in December, Stanford University has emerged with a new proposal to mitigate the impact of its expansion on the nation’s most expensive housing market. But officials say they aren’t satisfied.

The university’s latest offer includes a $3.4 billion investment in housing and another $1.1 billion in transportation improvements, the Wall Street Journal reported. Stanford plans to construct up to 2.275 million square feet of new academic buildings over 17 years.

“This is the third time at least we have seen a housing proposal that fails to mitigate the full impact on development,” Joe Simitian, president of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors said, according to the Journal, adding that he hadn’t yet studied the new proposal in depth.

During negotiations last fall, Santa Clara County passed a new law that requires the school to make 16 percent of new housing available at below market rate prices. Stanford then sued the county board for unfairly singling it out.

Stanford’s new proposal includes 2,172 units for its workforce, over a quarter of which will below market-rate. A university spokesman said that meeting the requirements of the Santa Clara law may lead to a resolution of the lawsuit against the county.

Meanwhile, county officials say the university — which has an endowment of $26.5 billion — needs to build far more housing to accommodate the 7,000 people expected to be added during the expansion.

Stanford’s offer comes on the heels of Google pledging to spend about $1 billion on creating more housing in the Bay Area. The tech and search company plans to spend $750 million repurposing Google’s own land[WSJ] — Kevin Sun


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