A portion of the 1888 Frederick Law Olmstead's master plan for the campus

A portion of the 1888 Frederick Law Olmstead's master plan for the campus


Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What is a development agreement?

Development agreements are voluntary contracts that can result in the applicant providing community benefits outside of the regulatory process (General Use Permit) in exchange for the public agency agreeing to “freeze” the development standards applicable to the project for the term of the agreement.

Q: How long will the DA community outreach process last?

The DA community outreach process will take place throughout the DA negotiations between Stanford and the County of Santa Clara, beginning in November 2018 and hopefully wrapping up in late Winter 2019. Please see our TIMELINE page for more details on in-person opportunities to share your input.

Q: How can I share my ideas about possible community benefits in the Development Agreement?

Share your ideas in person at one of our public meetings (see the TIMELINE page for details), or online on our SHARE A COMMENT page.

Q: Where can I find Stanford policy documents, such as the Community Plan, the 2000 General Use Permit, and the Draft EIR?

See our LINKS page to access Stanford policy documents.

Q: What is the Stanford Community Plan?

The Stanford Community Plan refines the policies of the General Plan as they apply to Stanford lands within the County of Santa Clara. The primary purpose of the Community Plan is to guide future use and development of Stanford lands in a manner that incorporates key General Plan principles of compact urban development, open space preservation, and resource conservation.

Q: Which Stanford lands does the 2018 General Use Permit cover?

Approximately 50% of Stanford University’s 8,180 acres of land are under the jurisdiction of the County of Santa Clara. This area is covered under the 2018 General Use Permit. The majority of Stanford’s academic buildings, student housing, and faculty/staff housing is in unincorporated Santa Clara County. This area includes the Stanford University Campus and a portion of the foothills to the west.




Q: What years does the 2018 General Use Permit cover?

If approved by the Board of Supervisors, the 2018 General Use Permit would authorize the next phase of incremental campus growth and land use development on Stanford’s land in unincorporated Santa Clara County anticipated to take place from approximately 2018 through 2035.

Q: What is Stanford proposing to build under the 2018 General Use Permit?

Stanford’s application for the 2018 General Use Permit proposes 2,275,000 net square feet of academic and academic support facilities, 2,600 new student beds, 550 new faculty/staff housing units, and up to 40,000 net new square feet of childcare centers and trip-reducing facilities. Specific buildings and housing units are not identified, and the University needs to submit for approval of these projects on a case by case basis. Depending on the specific aspects of each project, it may be necessary to perform additional environmental review.

Q: What is Stanford seeking approval for?

Stanford seeks County approval of the proposed 2018 General Use Permit and related amendments to the Stanford Community Plan, and County Zoning Map.

Q: How do the Community Plan, General Use Permit, EIR, and Development Agreement all relate?

See our BACKGROUND page for more information on each document and how they relate.