Sunnyvale is the 7th most populous city in the San Francisco Bay Area and one of the major cities comprising Silicon Valley. It is bordered by portions of San Jose to the north, Moffett Federal Airfield to the northwest, Mountain View to the northwest, Los Altos to the southwest, Cupertino to the south, and Santa Clara to the east. It lies along the historic El Camino Real and Highway 101.
As part of California's high-tech area known as Silicon Valley, Sunnyvale is the headquarters location of many technology companies and is a major operating center for many more. It is also home to several aerospace/defense companies. Sunnyvale was also the home to Onizuka Air Force Station, often referred to as "the Blue Cube" due to the color and shape of its windowless main building. The facility, previously known as Sunnyvale Air Force Station, was named for the deceased Space Shuttle Challenger astronaut Ellison Onizuka. It served as an artificial satellite control facility of the U.S. military until August 2010 and has since been decommissioned and demolished.
Sunnyvale is one of the few U.S. cities to have a single unified Department of Public Safety, where all personnel are trained as firefighters, police officers, and EMTs, so that they can respond to an emergency in any of the three roles.
Library services for the city are provided by the Sunnyvale Public Library, located at the Sunnyvale Civic Center.
For elementary and middle schools, most of the city is in the Sunnyvale School District, while some parts are in the Cupertino Union School District and the Santa Clara Unified School District.
For high schools, most of the city is in the Fremont Union High School District (the parts that are part of the Sunnyvale School District or Cupertino Union School District for primary schools), and those areas of Sunnyvale are divided between Fremont High School and Homestead High School. Some parts of the city are in the Santa Clara Unified School District.In November 2009, previously closed portions of the main streets in downtown Sunnyvale were reopened as part of the ongoing downtown redevelopment of the Sunnyvale Town Center mall, marking the first time in over three decades that those street blocks have been open to vehicle and pedestrian traffic. Part of the project involved building new apartment buildings, however during the Great Recession the property was repossessed by Wells Fargo in 2009; the developer countersued, leaving the project in legal limbo through 2015.
The two office buildings are now fully occupied by Apple and Nokia. Mixed-use developments have been built at the former Town and Country location near the Plaza del Sol just north of Murphy Avenue. By mid-2015 new multistory apartment complexes had opened, including a number of ground-floor businesses, and the lawsuit against Wells Fargo was resolved in the bank's favor. The development was sold to Sares Regis in late 2016. Redwood Square reopened as a park in 2017. Many apartments are occupied, and more are being completed in 2020. A Whole Foods Market and AMC Theatres multiplex opened in October 2020"