In a petition filed with the court last Friday, the Los Gatos Citizens for Responsible Development and Los Gatos attorneys John Shepardson and Andrew H. Wu challenge the project under California planning and zoning laws.
Santa Rosa-based attorney Rose Zoia, who represents The Citizens, writes in the petition that as part of the project latest approvals in June of this year, the town adopted a zoning ordinance inconsistent with the Los Gatos General Plan.
Zoia says the plan mandates a 35-foot-height limit on buildings located in the light industrial zone.
"A zoning ordinance inconsistent with the general plan at the time of its enactment is 'invalid when passed,' " according to the complaint, which cites case law Sierra Club v. Board of Supervisors.
The suit's goal is to have town government officials set aside the project's most recent approvals, including the zoning ordinance, the petition states.
On April 23, 2012, Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Joseph Huber ruled that the town's first approval of the project in 2012 violated the California Environmental Quality Act.
The Los Gatos Town Council in September of 2012 rescinded its project approvals due to Judge Huber's ruling and project developer John R. Shenk, on behalf of Los Gatos Business Park, LLC., began a new application.
This past June, the town rescinded several ordinances and amended the zoning ordinance for the project allowing a new so-called "planned development" overlay zone that allowed for the project's building heights to exceed the 35-foot cap.
"If the project remains approved, construction may proceed with immediate, severe and irreparable harm to the environment and to petitioners, the town, the county and the state of California residents," the petition states.
The latest legal challenge also claims the town acted "in an arbitrary and capricious manner" and hopes the court will issue an administrative stay order, or preliminary injunction enjoining the town, the developer and the applicant from moving forward.
A similar legal challenge, based on the project's building heights, was thrown out by Judge Huber on Aug. 13 ruling against The Citizens who had the same arguments.
Netflix spokesman Joris Evers confirmed last week that the giant media streaming company, born and headquartered in Los Gatos, has signed a lease now for a second building related to the project. On Wednesday, he declined comment on this latest legal challenge.
The total project includes four buildings on a 21-acre lot at the intersection of Highway 85 and Winchester Boulevard. Its total square footage has been reduced from a proposed 550,000 square feet to 485,000.
Two of its four buildings' heights were lowered from four stories, or 65 feet, to three stories, or 50 feet. The other two edifices are 65 feet. The project's originally proposed three-story parking garage will also be capped at 35 feet, with the option of going underground, the Council voted.
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