Santa Cruz City Council and Board Address University Growth Plans

Long Range Development Plan faces backlash

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UC Santa Cruz administration is working to pass a new proposal for the Long Range Development Plan (LRDP) to expand enrollment to 28,000 students by 2040 and introduce new graduate and undergraduate housing through Student Housing West (SHW). The proposal has faced backlash on and off campus. 

The Santa Cruz City Council and Santa Cruz Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the City–County Task Force to Address University Growth Plans on Jan. 14. 

According to the proposed strategy to address university growth, the task force will focus on minimizing enrollment growth under the LRDP, mitigating the impact of enrollment growth on the City of Santa Cruz and ensuring infrastructure is provided to support any growth. 

The introduction of the task force is the first action the City Council has taken under Measure U — a 2018 measure that gave City Council sole authority on limiting enrollment growth and infrastructure changes at UCSC. 

“UCSC is facing serious growth issues and UC is not providing the resources to address that growth,” said council member Chris Krohn in a text. “This is leading to acute difficulties for students and staff on campus. Salaries have not kept up with the cost-of-living, bus service and classroom space and housing are all in meltdown situations.” 

The city and county will annually allocate $80,000 for an advocate between the city and the university, $20,000 to hire interns assisting in organizing and $20,000 for any additional expenses. The costs will be split equally between the city and the county.