Stanford to file request to rename Serra Mall by end of month


Stanford intends to file a Preliminary Street Name Request to rename Serra Mall to Jane Stanford Way by the end of January. The request, which will be submitted to Santa Clara County and the U.S. Postal Service, is the first step in the University’s effort to rename the street in accordance with its September 2018 decision to rename Serra Mall, Serra House and the Serra dorm.

The decision to rename Serra Mall — which would change the University’s official address — followed two years of controversy over the number of campus features honoring California mission system founder Father Junipero Serra, who was largely criticized for his treatment of Native Americans.

Following the decision, Stanford convened a working group, comprised of University staff members, for each Serra feature they are planning to rename. The working group tasked with seeking approval to rename Serra Mall met four times during fall quarter 2018 to “prepare for the variety of issues associated with the name change,” wrote University spokesperson EJ Miranda in an email to The Daily.

The working group has been analyzing how the renaming will affect offices across campus as well as coordinating the completion of various transitional paperwork, according to Miranda.

The University will need to update emergency services agencies on the local, regional and national level, as well as mapping databases and “scores of legal and financial filings,” Miranda wrote.

Miranda also cited changing campus maps, street signs and building signs as transitional tasks.

Should the preliminary request be approved, Stanford will submit a Final Street Name Request to the County’s Central Permit Office. At this point, the County Surveyor will schedule a public hearing within 30 days, after which the Surveyor will make the final decision.

Meanwhile, efforts by the working groups tasked with renaming Serra dorm and Serra House — an academic building that houses the Clayman Institute for Gender Research — are ongoing, Miranda said.


Contact Julia Ingram at jmingram ‘at’

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Julia Ingram ’21 was The Daily's Volume 256 editor-in-chief. She is a New York City native majoring in English literature and working toward a career in news reporting. Contact her at jmingram ‘at’