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VTA Land Use Policy Strives for Cooperation


This article was contributed by Sr. Transportation Planner Melissa Cerezo

The VTA Board of Directors approved a new Land Use and Development Review Policy at its January 10 meeting which sets the stage to enhance the vibrancy and sustainability of communities near transit.
Through this new policy, VTA aims to increase the convenience and comfort of those taking transit, walking and bicycling, and safeguard and enhance the transportation infrastructure investments that have been made throughout Santa Clara County.
The policy identifies principles for VTA to strengthen local partnerships, support high-quality and transit-supportive development, and prioritize active and sustainable transportation.
With this policy, VTA has a blueprint for working closely with local governments in the various planning stages leading up to the construction of new development.
By providing clarity on and predictability of VTA’s key priorities, improving the coordinated review of new developments (through new information tools, improved data sharing, and earlier conversations in the development process), VTA will bring greater value and efficiency to the development process.
This will reduce risk of higher development costs and construction delays for projects near transit. At the same time, VTA will collaborate with cities and developers to carefully consider the best ways to maximize new investment from land use projects while protecting and enhancing planned transportation infrastructure investments, especially transit.
VTA’s key priorities include supporting new development to locate along VTA’s frequent transit grid and rail stations and ensuring the safety and compatibility of new development with light rail, and the future BART alignment.
The new policy is intended to help increase ridership, lessen reliance on solo driving, reduced greenhouse gases, and improve public health. You can read more about the policy on VTA's January 10, 2019 Board agenda, item 6.11.

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