Battle Between Berkeley Group and UC Berkeley Over Student Population Size Heads to State Supreme Court

By Jay Barmann :sfist – excerpt

Depending on what happens at the California Supreme Court, 3,050 fewer students might get acceptance letters from UC Berkeley this spring, because a Berkeley citizens’ group is irritated with the pace of the school’s growth.

The court is taking up the case Wednesday, after the group called Save Berkeley Neighborhoods sued the University of California Regents back in 2019 over its growth plan for the school, which called for a 33.7% increase in the size of the student body between 2005 and 2020. At issue, primarily, is the fact that UC Berkeley only has housing space for around 10,000 students, but its undergraduate classes enroll around 32,000 students, which means many have to seek housing off-campus. Save Berkeley Neighborhoods says that this drives up rents in the city, consequently displacing other residents, increasing homelessness. And, they say, the larger student body puts too much strain on city services…

The suit from Save Berkeley Neighborhoods resulted in an Alameda County judge ruling last year that UC Berkeley must cap its enrollment at 2020-2021 levels until it redoes an environmental impact report on a housing complex it plans to build. The school appealed the ruling, the Court of Appeals upheld the lower court’s ruling and now the appeal has gone to the state Supreme Court.…(more)

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