San Jose Votes NO on Measure B & YES on Measure C

UPDATE: Though not every vote has been counted, the results are clear, San Jose has rejected sprawl by saying NO to Measure B and YES to Measure C!

Funded by two billionaires, the 367-page Evergreen Initiative would have rewritten local rules to facilitate sprawl development across the city. It posed a major threat to thousands of acres of open space across San Jose, including the iconic Coyote Valley—a lynchpin landscape at the city’s southern edge that connects the Mount Hamilton Range with the Santa Cruz Mountains. The measure also included detailed plans for a 200-acre sprawling development on the city’s eastern edge, which would have paved over greenbelt lands while bypassing affordable housing requirements and local fees.

Measure B would have set a dangerous precedent for the entire Bay Area—replacing community-driven planning and environmental safeguards with a rush to the ballot box and more slick advertising campaigns. It would have brought more traffic and congestion, increased air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, impacted critical wildlife habitat, and strained our drinking water supply. It was opposed by a diverse coalition of seniors, veterans, environmentalists, and community members across the political spectrum.

Yes on C Passed!

To counteract Measure B, Mayor Sam Liccardo, nine San Jose City Council members, community organizations, and community leaders put forward an alternative initiative, Measure C, which voters passed on June 5.

Measure C stops developers from taking shortcuts that will negatively impact the quality of life in San Jose. Measure C also creates new protections for open space lands at the edges of the city and encourages the creation of affordable homes in the right places. San Jose chose to stop the deception and deceit of Measure B by voting YES on C.

Check out our blog for Measure B News and Op-Eds.

Photo: Wesley Lee

4 Comments on “San Jose Votes NO on Measure B & YES on Measure C

  1. San Jose has become completely unaffordable because single family homes are not allowed to be built!
    Down with high density housing and increasing highway congestion!

    • Unfortunately, it is single-family homes which take up more space and cause people to have to drive farther to work. It’s that combination that creates traffic congestion — at least on the highways where congestion is most severe. If we build higher density housing near employment centers and/or transit (connected to additional employment centers), then we can have more people with less traffic. Congestion = number of people * miles traveled. Reduce either and you reduce congestion.

      > Down with high density housing and increasing highway congestion!

      Based on my formula above, the only way to achieve these two goals simultaneously is to outlaw job creation. Some highly-residential cities have effectively done this and others are considering it. However, outlawing job creation in a few cities doesn’t help with highway congestion because people still need to drive across those parts of the region to get to housing and jobs in other parts of the region.

      • As a San Jose native, it seems like we are trying to have our cake and eat it too when it comes to housing development. On the one hand, we all would like to have more affordable housing, and conventional logic is that this can only be achieved with a significant increase in available housing, but whether we go the route of more high-density housing, or single family housing, it doesn’t seem to me that there is any way of adding a sufficient amount of housing in silicon valley without simultaneously stretching our environment and infrastructure to the breaking point. Additionally, wealthy property owners have no interest in seeing their investments lose value.

        I think we have to stop creating jobs at a greater rate than we can create housing for people who work them. The focus needs to be on sustainable growth over unregulated growth. The more tech that moves in, the more that working class people who have called the bay their home for years are being pushed out. I for one can’t see how that system won’t eventually collapse on itself, especially as ballooning silicon valley populations and tech profits put ever more demand on service sector jobs whose wages are dwarfed by rising cost of living.

      • That makes no sense. High density housing = high density traffic. Plain and simple.

        Creating a beautiful sprawling rich-folks-only housing complex, that REQUIRES modifying the low income definitions and accommodations to do that, will undermine and eventually unravel rent control in San Jose. Once the limits and definition of low income are modified by the obscenely rich, it will set a precedent to remove it from all low income housing in San Jose. After that there will be no affordable housing in the bay area and everyone that makes less than the newly defined income limits will be out, on the streets. This will create a whole new category and a whole new community of homeless people. But hey, at least the rich folks will have a place to live – and after all, they don’t mind paying 300% to 400% more than anyone else in the world to live here, so, it OK. It’s good for business. Business is your friend… right?

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