Honorable Mayor Liccardo and City Council: On behalf of The Silicon Valley Organization (The SVO), I am writing to support City Staff’s memorandum to approve the current membership of the Station Area Advisory Group (SAAG). By way of background, we are the Silicon Valley’s premier business advocacy organization representing 1,400+ companies that employ nearly 300,000 workers and we represent our membership as the region’s largest Chamber of Commerce.
I would like to applaud City Staff in their thoughtful approach in engaging community stakeholders to participate in the development of the Diridon Station Area and the potential arrival of Google to San Jose. As a strong advocate for job growth and economic development, I will point out that this is an incredible opportunity that will positively transform the City of San Jose for decades to come and The SVO welcomes the chance to potentially add thousands of new jobs to the city. These are critical, new jobs that the city urgently needs in order to address the current jobs to housing ratio imbalance.
The current proposed 35-member SAAG reflects a broad spectrum of stakeholders invested in key areas: placemaking, housing/transportation/education opportunities, environment, and economic interests. The size of the committee is consistent with previous groups, such as the 2040 General Plan Task Force. Furthermore, all members of the public will have an opportunity to weigh in through the public commenting process and nobody will be left out of the community engagement/feedback process. The City Council should not further delay development progress and proceed with staff recommendations to establish this important committee.
The SVO urges the Mayor and Council to approve council agenda item 3.6 and support city staff’s recommendations for the SAAG membership.