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March 17, 2010 > Northern California Vocational College to offer classes

Northern California Vocational College to offer classes

By Steve Wyant

A new vocational school may be heading to Milpitas soon. At the Milpitas Planning Commission meeting on March 10, 2010 the Commission unanimously approved, with minor conditions, a conditional use permit to allow Northern California Vocational College (NCVC) to move into an existing building at 1657 McCandless Drive.

The area had originally been zoned Heavy Industrial (M2) which allowed for Vocational Schools as a Conditionally Permitted Use. In June 2008, the area was re-zoned to Multi-Family High Density Residential when the Transit Area Specific Plan was adopted around the proposed Milpitas BART station. However, there is an interim period in which the existing buildings can operate with industrial type uses. According to Milpitas Junior Planner Tiffany Brown, who presented the application to the Planning Commission, until there are specific proposals to develop the site consistent with the long-term vision of the specific plan, the building can operate under the original zoning classification.

NCVC has operated in San Jose since 2004. The college offers adult training in the fields of Nursing, Electronic Technician, Beauty, Therapy, Construction, Computers and Food Safety. Once the Milpitas site is developed, NCVC will move the Nursing, Construction and Computer classes to Milpitas, offering afternoon and evening classes.

The Planning Commission's agenda consisted of only NCVC's request, but it was not the only topic of interest. The commission discussed at length the need and desire to set up a special work session prior to the next meeting on March 24. Their goal is to best understand their legal role as a commission in dealing with what they expect to be a hotly debated issue: a conditional use permit allowing Walmart to expand at McCarthy Ranch.

The Walmart project would include the addition of nearly 18,500 sq. ft. of building area to the southern portion of the existing store. Primary use of the expanded area would be for grocery sales. The proposal also includes extending the store's operations to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Due to the intense amount of interest the project has generated, Planning Commission Chair Cliff Williams expects an overflow crowd and anticipates the meeting will continue past midnight. Documents detailing the project plans, required reports, and public comments within the Final Environmental Impact Report are available on the City's website.

Milpitas Planning Commission Meeting
Wednesday, March 24
7 p.m.
Milpitas City Hall Council Chambers
455 East Calaveras Boulevard, Milpitas
(408) 586-3279

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