Insights
Firm News

Farella’s Don Sobelman Assists South Valley Islamic Center to Secure Cordoba Center Mosque and Cemetery Project Approval

December 18, 2019 Announcement

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 18, 2019: With the help of Farella Braun + Martel Partner Don Sobelman, South Valley Islamic Center (SVIC) has won approval for its 16-acre Cordoba Center Project in San Martin, California.

Sobelman has represented SVIC on a pro bono basis since 2012 in an ongoing California Environmental Quality Act and permit process for its Cordoba Center—a development project including a mosque, community center, and cemetery to serve the needs of the local Muslim community. The project was approved by unanimous vote of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors on December 17, 2019.

Sobelman argued for SVIC at both the August Planning Commission hearing, where SVIC prevailed by a 5-2 vote, and at the December 17 Board of Supervisors hearing, where the Planning Commission’s decision was upheld on appeal, 5-0.

“I am proud of this work and thrilled that SVIC can finally move forward with the development of the Cordoba Center,” said Sobelman. “This project is so important to the approximately 100 Muslim families in south Santa Clara County who have used a barn as a mosque and gathering space for almost 20 years and have had to travel 60 miles to the nearest Muslim cemetery. After purchasing the land in 2006 and enduring a 13 year wait, SVIC can now build facilities that will not just serve the religious and cultural needs of the Muslim community, but will promote interfaith dialogue, diversity, and religious and cultural tolerance.”

SVIC is a founding member of the Interfaith Community of South County (ICSC), an interfaith organization comprised of 17 local religious institutions. The 2018 Gavilan College Community Spirit Award recognized SVIC’s history of service to the local community. 

Representation of SVIC with respect to the Cordoba Center Project was in collaboration with Downey Brand LLP, with the support of both Muslim Advocates and the Stanford Religious Liberty Clinic.

Farella Braun + Martel is a leading Northern California law firm representing corporate and private clients in sophisticated business transactions and complex commercial, civil and criminal litigation. Clients seek our imaginative legal solutions and the dynamism and intellectual creativity of our lawyers. We are headquartered in San Francisco and maintain offices in the Napa Valley that are focused on the wine industry.

Contact:
Cheryl Loof
Farella Braun + Martel LLP
[email protected]

Firm Highlights

Publication

Regulatory and Litigation Risks From California’s New Recycling Laws

California is a leader on plastics reduction, passing legislation regulating recyclability and sustainability claims, promoting the use of recycled materials, and preventing plastics pollution. In particular, two new laws require manufacturers to carefully evaluate...

Read More
Publication

Trends Guest Editorial: Wildfires and Wineries

Link to the article in Gradient's Trends  Spring 2023 newsletter. Recurring wildfires in the Napa and Sonoma Counties of California have created a set of niche problems for the surrounding wineries, on top of...

Read More
News

Farella Braun + Martel Announces 2023 New Partner Class

Read More
Event

Bisnow: San Francisco State of the Market

At Bisnow's San Francisco State of the Market event, Ashley Breakfield will moderate the panel "Revitalizing San Francisco: Reconfiguring the city for a hybrid world, reimagining downtown, and uplifting the economy." Click  here  for more information and to...

Read More
News

Lawdragon Names 7 Farella Partners Among “Leaders in Environmental Law”

Northern California legal powerhouse Farella Braun + Martel is pleased to announce that seven partners were selected to the 2023 Lawdragon Green 500: Leaders in Environmental Law Guide. Selected for inclusion are: Sarah Bell &ndash...

Read More
Publication

Hazy Regulations: Cannabis and the Environment

Summary : The U.S. legal cannabis market is an estimated $60 billion industry, with approximately 28,000 businesses operating and employing upwards of 300,000 people, and growing rapidly. Large-scale cultivation requires significant energy usage, nutrient...

Read More
News

Chambers USA 2023 Recognizes Farella Braun + Martel Lawyers, Practices

Farella Braun + Martel is pleased to announce that Chambers USA has recognized 16 lawyers and six practice areas in the legal directory’s 2023 edition. Individual California and Western U.S. Rankings: Sarah Bell &ndash...

Read More
Publication

California Attorney General’s Office Files PFAS Lawsuit

The California Attorney General’s Office has turned its focus to PFAS, filing litigation that is likely to be one of the larger of the hundreds of PFAS-related lawsuits currently pending throughout the country. On...

Read More
News

Discovery Builders Wins Complete Defense Ruling at Trial

Northern California legal powerhouse Farella Braun + Martel secured a complete defense victory at trial on behalf of developer Discovery Builders, Inc. and co-defendants in a lawsuit by the Yolo County District Attorney’s Office in...

Read More
Publication

Office-to-Housing Conversion: State and Local Efforts to Revitalize the Downtown

Originally published in The Registry . As office vacancies soar in traditional downtown areas like San Francisco’s Financial District, state and local officials are moving quickly to adopt incentives they hope will bring people...

Read More