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SAN JOSE, CA-It’s showtime for Cisco Systems. The software firm’s hotly debated proposed campus goes before city council members tonight and is widely expected to be given the thumbs-up.

That’s much to the disappointment of environmentalists, neighbors, and other critics who claim the massive $3-billion complex in North Coyote Valley on the south edge of San Jose will worsen the environment and snarl traffic. Cisco wants to house 20,000 workers on the planned 688-acre campus.

Challengers including the city of Salinas, local chapters of the Sierra Club, and the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments have said they might sue the city should the plans be approved. The dissenters say Cisco’s presence in North Coyote Valley will worsen an already tight local rental market and price out lower-paid residents. They also claim the development threatens diminishing open space in the area.

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