Additional Information - El Camino Real Cooridor Plan

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El Camino Real Corridor Plan

Objectives | Process | Meetings | Materials

What is a Corridor Plan

A corridor plan is a comprehensive plan that consolidates the recently-rezoned areas along El Camino Real and incorporates community benefits, design guidelines, and streetscape improvements to address all users of the corridor. 

Why is it Needed

El Camino Real is a critical arterial and Historic Landmark that connects communities from San Francisco to San Jose. Over time, it has evolved into an auto-oriented thoroughfare with inconsistent facilities for pedestrians, bicyclists, businesses, and residents. Given its regional prominence and common issues, the Grand Boulevard Initiative (GBI) was developed to achieve a shared vision that links transportation and land use. It is a collaboration of the 19 cities and two counties who have jurisdiction within the corridor to rethink the corridor’s potential for housing and urban development, balancing the need for cars and parking with viable options for transit, walking, and biking. 

The Vision for El Camino Real, as outlined in the General Plan, is to transform the corridor into a "Grand Boulevard" that supports walking, transit, bicycling, and economic development. Corridors function as a community and neighborhood connection, as well as a place for shopping, living and working. In 2011 and 2013, the City rezoned sections of the corridor to Mixed Use Corridor - El Camino Real (MUC-ECR), Mixed Use Neighborhood (MUN)Mixed Use Live/ Work (MULW), and Downtown Precise Plan (DTPP), consistent with the General Plan’s principles. 

While the zoning districts provide a good foundation, they are not integrated well and lack the seamless transition between adjacent land uses.  The Corridor Plan will provide a detailed review of the existing conditions and build off of the existing development standards to create a comprehensive plan for the entire corridor. The plan will not increase height limits or intensification beyond existing zoning standards. 

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ECR Concept Section

  • Consolidate recently zoned areas into a cohesive plan
  • Develop strategies to address current development challenges, such as small, narrow, and shallow lots with different ownership
  • Improve its relationship with the transit center (Caltrain station), downtown core (Downtown Precise Plan area), and surrounding neighborhoods
  • Improve the streetscape for a complete street design to promote walking, transit, bicycling, and economic development
  • Incorporate the community benefits, such as strategies for affordable housing, transitions from the corridor to the neighborhoods, and vibrant streetscapes
  • Create a more friendly place to the people who live and work here: parents, kids, commuters, homeowners, and local businesses
  • Provide a comprehensive business retention and development strategy, focusing on small businesses
  • Identify financing mechanism and phasing recommendations to implement public improvements



Step 1: Citizens Advisory Group (CAG). The City Council appointed a Citizen's Advisory Group consisting of ten (10) community members. The group’s role was to review draft consultant documents, including data analysis, recommended development standards and street design options, corridor plan components, and public workshop minutes. These meetings occurred during the review process and were open to the public.

Step 2: Existing Conditions. The consultant team comprehensively assessed the study area’s existing conditions, including stakeholder interviewsland use and urban design characteristicscirculation network and parking conditionsmarket and economic analysis, development feasibility, and infrastructure financing capacities.

Step 3: Community Meetings. The City held community meetings to present existing conditions assessment and issues, and seek community input on design improvements, development guidelines, and streetscape improvements.

Step 4: Potential Solutions. The consultant team drafted development standards, land use policies, and design guidelines options to improve and enhance the Corridor. The work helped to integrate land use and transportation policies, promoting Corridor and Downtown Precise Plan goals related to pedestrian- and transit-oriented development, and complete streets consistent with the El Camino Real’s "Grand Boulevard" designation.

Step 5: Community Meetings. The City held community meetings to review and provide direction on recommendations relating to land use, urban design, and streetscape. 

Step 6: Corridor Plan. The consultant team drafted the corridor plan based on community input and technical studies and analysis.

Step 7: Public Hearings.  The City held public hearings before the Planning Commission, and City Council for review and approval of the Corridor Plan. 

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION: All CAG, Community Meetings, and Public Hearings are open to the public. Please contact Lindy Chan or if you would like to receive a notice to attend these meetings.  

 Previous Meetings

Environmental Review

The proposed El Camino Real Corridor Plan falls within the requirements of Section 15262 “Feasibility and Planning Studies.”  The Corridor Plan is a planning study which provides a series of recommendations to implement the Plan’s vision.  Each of these recommendations will be studied and evaluated independently in accordance with CEQA before acted upon.


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