No-growth group raising money in latest attempt to stop Vallco

The bridge at Vallco Mall is now illuminated with a light display.

A Cupertino-based, no-growth advocacy group is looking for financial support as it continues pursuing multiple avenues to stop the redevelopment of the Vallco Town Center site, including 1,202 affordable housing units it would bring to the community.

The group, ‘Better Cupertino,’ sent out a fundraising email to supporters as it prepares to file a temporary restraining order against Sand Hill Property Company, the owner and developer at Vallco, in an attempt to halt demolition of the empty mall.

At a Cupertino Planning Commission meeting last week, the assistant city attorney warned that if the City of Cupertino denied Sand Hill demolition permits, it could open the city up to “significant litigation risk.” That meeting garnered headlines when Commission Chairman R “Ray” Wang called the risks, and possible fines in excess of $120 million by some counts, “a small price to pay.”

The newsletter explicitly highlights Better Cupertino’s mission of stopping development at Vallco, and notes that the group plans to continue its fight against the current iteration of the project.

“…we still have one more inescapable hurdle — to keep SHP from demolishing structures and starting construction before the judge determines if project approval city staff granted last year was lawful,” the fundraising appeal states. “If construction begins before the judge considers the suit, the judge is very likely to let construction continue.”

The fundraising appeal sent by the no-growth group, Better Cupertino.

The City of Cupertino determined last September that the Vallco Town Center application met the requirements of SB35, and approved the project.

The redevelopment of Vallco Town Center was approved by the City of Cupertino under SB35 in September 2018 and is slated to include more than 2,400 total residential units with 1,202 at affordable levels.