News

City set to redraw lot lines at Buena Vista

Planning commission prepares to approve new site map at Palo Alto's only mobile-home park

As lot lines get redrawn at Buena Vista Mobile Home Park, the Jisser family will lease eight housing units currently on a 0.7-acre parcel it owns to the Santa Clara County Housing Authority until they can be accommodated on the 4.5-acre residential zone. Photo by Zachary Hoffman.

After reaching an agreement in May to preserve Buena Vista Mobile Home Park and prevent displacement of the park's 400 residents, Palo Alto and Santa Clara County officials are now preparing for their next challenge: the park's long-deferred renovation.

An early step in the process will take place on Wednesday night, when the city's Planning and Transportation Commission is scheduled to revise the lot lines at the 6.19-acre site in Barron Park, which also includes a commercial building and a service station. If approved, the new map would clearly delineate the areas that the Jisser family will continue to own on the 4.5-acre site that has been sold to the Santa Clara County Housing Authority as part of the May 18 agreement.

Today, the Jisser family owns the entire site, which consists of five parcels. The family had been planning to close the mobile-home park since the fall of 2012 -- a prolonged process that prompted litigation against the city by both residents and the Jisser family.

The closure of Buena Vista was averted after the Palo Alto City Council and the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors each agreed to contribute $14.5 million in affordable-housing funds for preservation of the mobile-home park. The Santa Clara County Housing Authority is contributing $26 million to make up the balance of the $40.5-million purchase price and to pay for improvements to the park's utility infrastructure.

According to a report from the Planning and Community Environment Department, the revised map will reduce the number of parcels from five to three, with the Jisser Family retaining their control of the two smaller commercial parcels: a 1-acre parcel that includes a building with a Jamba Juice and Baja Fresh and an 0.7-acre parcel that includes gas station and eight housing units.

The Jisser family would lease the eight units to the Housing Authority for up to three years, thus allowing the residents to remain in place until they can be accommodated on the site's largest parcel, which includes most of the mobile homes.

The Housing Authority would take ownership of the 4.5-acre parcel in a residential zone that includes almost all of the park's housing units (two mobile homes will be bisected by the new lot line; one is vacant and will be removed, while the other will remain in place for the time being, the report states). The park consists of 104 mobile homes, 12 studios and one single-family home.

According to the report, the Housing Authority would take ownership of the largest parcel "to preserve the property's use as an affordable modular home park community." The authority would also contract with an entity that would "make repairs and updates to the site to ensure compliance with building codes."

Related content:

Behind the Headlines: District investigates sexual assault; Saving Buena Vista

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Comments

16 people like this
Posted by Merry
a resident of Palo Alto Hills
on Jul 11, 2017 at 7:36 pm

And so it begins.


1 person likes this
Posted by AlexDeLarge
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 11, 2017 at 9:17 pm

[Post removed.]


4 people like this
Posted by B. Driscoll
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 12, 2017 at 12:39 am

A small park with grass would be a nice addition to the complex and maybe even an enclosed pool and patio area for the residents. Since Palo Alto has gone the distance in conjunction with the county to preserve this residential area, why not designate it as an individual neighborhood as well? The Buena Vista neighborhood sounds about right and would give residents in this mobile home community their own sense of geographic and civic identity.


12 people like this
Posted by Good intentions but.....
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 12, 2017 at 12:41 am

Unfortunately some of the current residents may not be able to stay. They are the foreign nationals living in the country without documents.The old Buena Vista was private and therefore available to anyone who could pay the rent. Now that the park will be tax supported the units will be available only to citizens or permanent residents. The park will also no longer be community oriented but will be available to any eligible person in the County.


Posted by Me 2
a resident of Old Palo Alto

on Jul 12, 2017 at 9:41 am


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Like this comment
Posted by Keep PA Beautiful
a resident of Palo Alto Hills
on Jul 12, 2017 at 9:54 am

[Post removed due to same poster using multiple names]


1 person likes this
Posted by pacsailor
a resident of Gunn High School
on Jul 12, 2017 at 11:12 am

pacsailor is a registered user.

Is what @Good intentions but..... indicated is correct? this is not what most of the community realized.


3 people like this
Posted by income issues and other restictions
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jul 13, 2017 at 4:52 pm

income issues and other restictions is a registered user.

I wonder how the Housing Authority will handle current residents that don't fall under their guidelines.

According to their website, the Santa Clara Housing Authority requires residents to be either Very Low Income or Extremely Low Income (Very Low Income for 2 people is $47,800, Extremely Low is $28,650) more info:
Web Link

There are a maximum number of people allowed per unit (for example, 2 bedrooms have a max of 5 residents). They don't allow pets, smoking or drug use including medical marijuana.
Web Link

Residents are also supposed to have “Evidence of citizenship or eligible immigration status" .
Web Link


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