Frequently Asked Questions

Since PHGC closed in 2004, it has been used for grazing. Until recently, redevelopment at the site has been infeasible because of the City’s policies regarding the traffic congestion impacts and vehicle trips generated from new development. The City Council recently amended those policies (as described below), so new development can be considered on the site.

PHGC is located within an area previously covered by the Evergreen-East Hills Development Policy. Because the area has historically experienced traffic issues, the Policy limited additional residential growth so that the area’s traffic circulation system remained at an acceptable level of service.

In 2013, the State approved legislation known as Senate Bill 743 (SB 743) to shift the way cities measure traffic impacts when considering future development.  SB 743 requires the use of “Vehicle Miles Traveled” (VMT) as the metric to assess transportation impacts in environmental analyses. The City of San José has been a State-wide leader in implementing SB 743 and using VMT as the measure for traffic impacts in planning new development.   

City Council Policy 5-1, known as the VMT Policy, was adopted by the Council in 2018 and repealed the Evergreen-East Hills Development Policy. When it was originally adopted, it continued to restrict development at Pleasant Hills Golf Course because the potential new housing would generate too much VMT that could not be mitigated.

In December 2022, the City Council made changes to the VMT Policy, allowing development projects to be considered in areas zoned as Private Recreation and Open Space, even if the VMT impacts can’t be reduced. This modification opens up the possibility of development at PHGC.

Since the City changed amended the VMT Policy (as described above), a development team has announced that it seeks to redevelop the site with a mix of residential and job-generating uses.

To ensure that future potential development of the PHGC site includes community input, the City Council directed staff to conduct a city-led community outreach and engagement process to develop a set of community-centered guiding principles.

A local developer team is interested in pursuing the PHGC site for the creation of a mixed-use project that would include housing, commercial space, and other community-wide amenities. The team is led by Mark Lazzarini and Tony Arreola of Terrascape Ventures.

The developer team has submitted a General Plan amendment application to change PHGC’s land use designation from Private and Open Space to Mixed Use Neighborhood and Mixed Use Commercial. No proposed development has been submitted to or approved by the City.

General Plan Amendment Application

The following Project Team is responsible for leading the planning process, conducting community engagement, creating design concepts, and preparing the PHGC Guiding Principles document:

Two community-based organizations (CBOs), Latina Coalition of Silicon Valley and Vietnamese American Roundtable, are part of the Project Team and are assisting with outreach and engagement with the communities around PHGC. These CBOs have significant experience working in San José. They are committed to generating widespread participation in the Guiding Principles process and ensuring that engagement is accessible. The outreach strategy is multifaceted and will include printed flyers, social media, and other outreach techniques recommended by experts at these CBOs. All outreach and engagement materials, activities, and meetings will be provided in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

The guiding principles document will direct what future development should achieve according to the community insights heard during the outreach process. It will outline the types of development that might occur on site and the amenities that will benefit both current and future residents; make recommendations for improvements to transportation options (pedestrian, bike, personal vehicle, bus, rail, etc.); suggest measures to preserve the character of the surrounding neighborhood; and set expectations for the inclusion of affordable housing.

The guiding principles document will not control the exact way that future development happens. It will not decide the specific location of elements like housing, parks, commercial space, and it will not determine commercial or residential tenants.

The establishment of the PHGC Guiding Principles will be the beginning of a much longer planning process. While the developer has submitted a General Plan amendment on the golf course property, no proposed development project has  been submitted to the City or approved. It is anticipated that a development proposal will be considered by the Planning Commission and the City Council after the Guiding Principles are complete. These Principles will be used by staff to evaluate the proposed project and to make its recommendation to the Commission and the Council.  The project review process will include detailed studies on topics such as transportation and on site resources, and will also include preparation of a full Environmental Impact Report. Multiple public hearings and notices will be required throughout the process.