News

Place-making' expert dazzles council with San Antonio plan

Nationally renowned place-making expert Fred Kent presented his plan to the City Council Tuesday for making a "great place" in San Antonio shopping center. Council members largely approved his ideas.

"I don't want to be too critical of this area but there aren't many great places in this region," Kent told the council. "This will be a great place in this region."

"I think it will be better than Santana Row -- there's no real square in Santana Row. People from 20 to 30 miles away will come here," he said. "When people have visitors, this will be one of the places they'll come to to show them."

The plan would provide a number of interesting features for the 50,000-square-foot square, to be built in phase 2 of Merlone Geier's redevelopment of San Antonio shopping center. It includes a "pop-jet fountain" which can turned off and used as a stage or holiday tree location. There are various game tables, movable tables and chairs, a 2,000 square foot "jewel building" where food and drinks can be served, vendor kiosks, a small outdoor library for kids, large chess pieces and an elevated monument to the birthplace of Silicon Valley. The monument compliments another nearby at the real birthplace, William Shockley's former lab building at 391 San Antonio Road, which will be knocked down for the project.

Kent removed half the 39 trees from the square, professing a different philosophy then city staff about how they contribute to place-making. Kent says they can often get in the way.

The most controversial aspect was a large Jumbotron hung on a parking garage wall in the square, which could play movies or show major sports events, or even a live feed of the square so people could look at themselves, Kent said. Fears were expressed that it would become a billboard.

Also part of the 9.9-acre project is 121,000 square feet of ground floor retail, presumably higher-end shops than those found in Phase 1 of the redevelopment at El Camino Real. There's a 397,000-square-foot office building, a 70,000-square-foot movie theater, and the tallest building, an eight-story, 167-room hotel. There will also be a 1,480-space parking garage. No homes are proposed.

Kent's passionate speaking before the council was no less impressive than his resume as founder and director of the Project for Public Spaces, which includes place-making efforts spanning 37 year: plans for New York's Time Square and Rockefeller Center, as well as the transformation of a portion of downtown Detroit using a beach concept. More locally, his efforts can be seen in and around downtown Los Altos, which he says has become quite popular. He said there would be "10 times" as many people drawn to Mountain View's new great place.

"Great places reach out like an octopus" to bring people in and "Great places have at least 10 things to do in them," he said. He showed pictures of people embracing and laughing. "That's what happens when people feel comfortable," he said.

Kent said the plan would encourage regular users who "take charge of it and they make it safe and they make it comfortable." To that end, chairs and tables would be movable so groups could arrange them as necessary.

"There's nothing I love more than a square -- all kinds of things go on in them," Kent said.

Council member Jac Siegel and others said they enjoyed the presentation, though they didn't agree with all of it. Siegel said of the jumbotron, "I think that's a mistake. It's too Disneyland. I don't know, I just don't see it."

Some residents criticized developer Merlone Geier's plans for not including the Milk Pail market, but showing another open air market at the Pachetti Way entrance to the shopping center with outdoor seating. The Milk Pail may be forced from its longtime location at the California Street corner of the site because it lacks adequate parking in the plan. It now relies on a shared parking agreement with the Ross and BevMo property proposed for redevelopment. There are over 700 signatures on an online petition calling for shared Milk Pail parking in the new plan.

While Kohl's, Trader Joe's and Walmart will remain, Siegel lamented the loss of a portion of a regional shopping center of big box stores in favor of smaller, more high end stores.

"A lot of people still need places to shop and buy merchandise -- we're not creating that here," Siegel said.

Others were also not entirely sold. Resident Don Bahl said Kent slaughtered many "sacred cows" in his talk, such as his position that San Antonio Road and El Camino Real be reduced to two lanes in each direction to make pedestrians feel they have more "authority" in the area, following the lead of Vancouver, which he said has only two-lane streets citywide.

Council candidate Jim Neal picked up on Kent's remarks about how rents around one of his places -- Manhattan's Bryant Park -- are now some of the highest in the world.

"(Project for Public Spaces) mentioned this will drive up the cost of rentals -- we really need that, don't we?" Neal said.

"I am concerned about the Jumbotron being turned into an electronic billboard," said resident Nancy Morimoto.

Others liked the idea of the Jumbotron. Council member Mike Kasperzak said Merlone Geier had a right to many of the improvements on the privately owned square without city approval. Merlone Geier had hired PPS to come up with the plan at the request of the City Council.

"One of the things that would draw me there is the movie theater or on Sunday to have brunch and watch" a football game on the Jumbotron, said Mayor Chris Clark. "I hope it wouldn't just become an ad billboard."

Council members also decided to have Project for Public Spaces propose improvements to the project's pedestrian and bicycle paths before the project is reviewed by the city's commissions. Council members will take vote on a final plan later this year. A draft environmental impact report will be released in April.

Comments

Posted by Chad Hoke, a resident of another community
on Mar 7, 2014 at 12:10 am

Missing in this whole conversation is the issue of traffic. Right now traffic on El Camino and San Antonio Road barely moves at Rush hour. I live across the road in Los Altos but I think twice before crossing El Camino for any reason. Now they are proposing a giant new development designed to draw people in from all over the region "like an Octopus"? While the proposed facilities sound like they will be first class, I urge the city council to come up with a realistic traffic mitigation plan before they approve this thing.


Posted by Old Ben, a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 7, 2014 at 12:37 am

That's where Shockley had his lab. Just imagine what was casually dumped down there.

TCE, for sure. Maybe a lot more.


Posted by view, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 7, 2014 at 1:09 am

Been shopping at the Milk Pail for decades and will hate to see it go but my main concern is that the city council focus on increasing housing commensurate with business / job increases. Where will all of the shop workers live -- Livermore?


Posted by Young Benjamine, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 7, 2014 at 6:29 am

Old Ben, You said you were moving some time ago. NY wasn't it? I guess those plans have changed. Anyway, one day maybe everyone in this town will be miserable and ruined, then you can rest comfortably that others are also miserable....or maybe not. Anyway, I love the "Perma-grouch/You're all doomed" character you have cultivated here. Cheers.


Posted by MVResident67, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 7, 2014 at 7:33 am

Chad Hoke:

"While the proposed facilities sound like they will be first class, I urge the city council to come up with a realistic traffic mitigation plan before they approve this thing."

~~~~~~~~~~

Good luck with that.

I will see if I can find the link, but it is to a draft traffic impact study that was done in relationship the massive Jay Paul development proposal for 395 Page Mill Road in Palo Alto. Anyway, Jay Paul has since withdrawn it's application with the city citing the "current political climate" in Palo Alto. The draft impact study was well over 100 pages, but one of the intersections that was studied was the intersection of San Antonio Road and El Camino Real (PRIOR to phase I of San Antonio Center having been developed). The intersection was already noted as having "unacceptable delay times" and the impact of the Jay Paul project was projected to make that intersection substantially worse. The scariest part about reading that impact report was that it how bad the traffic at that intersection already is, and clearly the phase II of San Antonio Center is only going to make it worse.

What are the traffic mitigation plans related to this development? Is there a draft of a traffic impact report available for public viewing online?

I will root around and see if I can find the link to that traffic impact study...it was EYE POPPING!


Posted by MVResident67, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 7, 2014 at 8:09 am

Aha, here's the link to the Draft Impact Analysis. The link will ask you to download a 151 page PDF, which should only take a few seconds. The entire analysis is VERY interesting to read, but if you want to focus on the section of the study related to San Antonio Road and El Camino Real then skip to page #77 and scroll back from there to get the background information, then skip to page #93 and scroll back from there to get the background information.

It is well worth the time to read this draft impact study.

Web Link


Posted by Observer, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 7, 2014 at 9:21 am

"Main Squares" and "Plazas" usually don't have a street bisecting it. This is putting lipstick on a pig. Nothing more.

And a farmer's market, open air market and the Milk Pail all together doesn't exactly fit my idea of a good business model if you are running the last two businesses.

Lastly, Mike Kasperzak really does seem to be in the pocket of the developers. He should just say nothing from now on.


Posted by Charles Bransi, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 7, 2014 at 9:24 am

For those who remember how the consultant where brought in, there was a lot of controversy. Normally, the consultant contract are managed by the city. In this case, against the staff recommendation, the consultant, Project for public spaces (PPS), were managed and paid by Merlone Geir.

This explain why it felt like a timeshare presentation by PPS. If we trim or removed a tree, you'll feel like you are in Paris. Let's move a chair, and now, you'll be transported to Italy. Let's add a jumbotron, and you are now in Time Square at christmas every day...

The funny part was when PPS claimed that people would come around the world to visit San Antonio Center. We could hear laughter in the audience. Jac Siegel asked about the tourist later, and then, PPS said that would probably be in a 20 miles radius.

There was some great ideas brought by PPS, but there is 2 main hurdle. First, who will manage all the activity PPS was depicting. This would cost money. Who will pay for it ? Merlone Geier is just a Mall flipper, they will resell the San Antonio Center 5 years from now. This is a big concern discussed by the City Council. Secondly, all the talks were based on a big square without cars ... Currently, the square is open for cars 5 days out of 7.

Finally, PPS proposed an idea that proximity is important. So, we should have road diet on San Antonio Road and El Camino !!! Also, we should have tiny sidewalk. I don't know if their vision match with the people actually living there ... It may be fun for an outing once a month, to see the cute San Antonio Center. But living in it would be filled with day-to-day problems.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 7, 2014 at 9:42 am

Garrett83 is a registered user.

The idea is to create place for something that in some cases have become recreation. Shopping, movies, and dining in space designed for leisure. The giant screen showing movies, events can also be adverts, nothing wrong with promoting businesses in and around the center. Community, cultural and civic events also can be placed on the big screen.

The 50's era shopping center in not returning anytime soon, but I did a search on early version of centers. Found they had space to draw people, architectural features that made the place unique. Good wide selection of stores helped, dining options and entertainment. Target is expanding, Kohl's just feel the need to expand, who knows Trader Joe's may want a new modern store.


Posted by Resident , a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 7, 2014 at 9:46 am

Same mistake as downtown mountain view. The restaurants are great but I rarely go these days since I can't find a place to park. There are only so many people that could walk to San Antonio center. You need roads and parking to bring enough people to keep it in business.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 7, 2014 at 11:44 am

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Can't find a place to park, way to many people, to many stores, long lines.

Parking is easy, nobody around, not very many stores, no lines.

Which one is the sound of success, vibrant and has many choices.

I understand 20 years ago wasn't that but retailing has changed, tastes change, people aren't having as many kids.

Wal Mart has taken away most of Sears and JCPenneys customers. We have Target, Kohl's and Wal Mart, we still have all the major stores covered.


Posted by OMV Resident, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 7, 2014 at 1:06 pm

@Resident -
"Same mistake as downtown mountain view. The restaurants are great but I rarely go these days since I can't find a place to park."

As Yogi Berra once said,
Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded."


Posted by Grammar police, a resident of Gemello
on Mar 7, 2014 at 1:27 pm

"a different philosophy then city staff"
Than, not then.


Posted by Grammar police, a resident of Gemello
on Mar 7, 2014 at 1:28 pm

"place-making efforts spanning 37 year"

Does anybody proofread this stuff? Years, not year.


Posted by Grammar police, a resident of Gemello
on Mar 7, 2014 at 1:35 pm

I should have saved all of these up into one comment. The poor grammar really detracts from the article.

"transformation of portion of downtown Detroit"
"a portion" or "portions" would make sense

"Kohls" should be "Kohl's"

"high end" should be "high-end" but I don't want to get too technical with things like em dashes vs. en dashes vs. double hyphens.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 7, 2014 at 2:18 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Was part of Detroit is coming back, buy cheap housing, remodel wonderful built homes. Gentrification is such a dirty word compared to blight, or run down. It is Amazon when downtown MV was in sorry, 40 years earlier was a thriving.commercial center then along came the suburban shopping center.

Now the shoe is on the other.foot, San Antonio Center needs a bit of gentrification but we aren't Stanford or Valley Fair.

Also want to point out of Los Altos becomes another version of Los Gatos, would that cause traffic on San Antonio Road.


Posted by local411, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 7, 2014 at 2:34 pm

Strictly speaking, Grammar Police could distinguish between grammar and punctuation.

Parking around Castro is actually doable, even at busy times, if you are willing to use the high-rise garages and walk a couple of blocks. Habitual whining, anyone?

Trees are a good thing, of course, but the City has mandated a number of over-planted developments that over time are resulting in over-crowded, less-than-optimally-healthy trees and a lot of long-term costs to get things into better proportion and allow for a nice canopy to develop with a more appropriate number of larger, thriving trees. Of course, be prepared for bureaucratic resistance if you later want to take out a misplaced tree that the City forced you to plant.

Seeing the completed phase, which is a clumsy collection of cliches rendered in what looks like a giant cardboard model, is not encouraging in terms of the esthetics of this development.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 7, 2014 at 3:11 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

A cardboard model is cool but like.everything else in life. It ages. Look at Park Place Apartments and City Centre which to me has aged well, Eagle Park has done extremely well. Yes I agree over planting is not good, but did you know at one time people were against on telling property owners they had to plant trees.

Trees grow, landscaping matures, buildings get painted or faced over time. Yes trees get cut down, landscaping changes, paint peels and building are pulled down.

100 View St, remember building was built, thought it was ugly but aged well.




Posted by Sally, a resident of Waverly Park
on Mar 7, 2014 at 3:17 pm

Does anyone else see the irony in pulling down Shockley's building so that a monument to it can be put up?


Posted by UC Davis Grad, a resident of Cuernavaca
on Mar 7, 2014 at 3:31 pm

@Sally: That would be in line with all of the other historical buildings in Mountain View that were waltzed down, only to have a marker put in its place -- so that everyone can remember the historic structure that *used* to be there.

Same story, different day.


Posted by DH, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 7, 2014 at 3:41 pm

The current San Antonio shopping area may be ugly. But it has a big benefit with its stores covering everyday shopping needs in one place. No need to drive miles from one place to another to get the weekly shopping done.
Well, that is going to change, with the Merlone Geir design 'upscaling' it all.
But don't we have enough eateries in town (Castro)? Is there a shortage of fancy shopping places in our area (from Santana Row to Stanford Shopping Center)? Is there is a shortage of movie theatres? Wouldn't a hotel be better placed either on Castro street, or on North Bayshore?
And who believes out-of-towners will enjoy coming to this place, when traffic is going to be a nightmare?

The San Antonio Shopping Center redesign may well become a case study of a city council that doesn't understand the needs of its local community, or is not interested, or just lacks common sense.

We need more housing with good infrastructure including transportation, schools, basic shopping, parks, etc. Let's stop putting the cart in front of the horse.


Posted by Nancy Morimoto, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 7, 2014 at 4:46 pm

The meeting was very surreal, with all the talk of how food and open air displays are such an integral part of placemaking, plus the diagrams and photos of a produce market planned for a few steps away from the Milk Pail and absolutely no word (except for a some public comments) that the Milk Pail even existed immediately adjacent to the project. What a wasted opportunity for a win-win situation for both the developer and the local community. Tell the council you want to see them work towards this goal. It's not too late if residents rise up.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 7, 2014 at 7:28 pm

The building housing Shockley is historical for a event, not the building which wasn't even built by Shockley, it was built to dry cots. Most everything built in Mountain View is and has been developer built, but with odd expectations in Old Mountain View.

Most everything around is first or second building generation, before it was open land with the expectation of Old Mountain View and few buildings.

50 years ago they thought about tearing down most of downtown Mountain View for very modern buildings, glad they didn't touch it. Seen other places that did, results were horrible and full sorrow.

I think with all the residential buildings coming, all those young people who grew up watching cooking shows, know what good food or bad food. Milk Pail Market has something that Safeway doesn't, good choices, good food, good services and different choices.


Posted by Tony, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 7, 2014 at 7:32 pm

When you pay city council members $500 a month to administer an almost one quarter of a billion dollar ($241,000,000+) budget, what do you expect? We have exactly what we pay for.
Let's begin to fix this mess from the bottom up and establish a competitive compensation program so that highly qualified citizens can and will want to run for these important offices that affect every person and business in Mountain View.
It appears that right now special interest groups are exerting a lot more influence than should be allowed.
Perhaps with reasonable salaries a realistic and balanced long range plan of controlled growth could be developed by elected full time professionals and implemented.
We cannot change the past but we can take charge now and with vision change the future.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 7, 2014 at 10:00 pm

Agreed. Mike K for one seems to be way over enthusiastic for what amounts to be a bad idea for the area.
If phase one is any example of what's coming, good luck,
I'm sure those tourists coming from 20 to 30 miles away will think twice after sitting in San Antonio traffic or cutting through neighborhoods to watch movies in the luxury theater.
This is a joke! The joke is on the unrepresented residents of Mountain View.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 7, 2014 at 10:02 pm

Oh by the way there was no "dazzle", only more of the same...


Posted by psr, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 7, 2014 at 11:45 pm

I hear you, Sally.

It is sad that we pull down actual history so that it can be replaced with a monument to the thing that was torn down. I'm glad that wasn't done with the missions or any of the VERY few historic buildings in California. It saddens me to see these buildings torn down, only to be replaced with disposable concrete tilt-ups.

Why not actually PRESERVE the building? Paint a mural on the exterior depicting a timeline history of Silicon Valley and have something instructional inside for the area children. This concrete jungle will bring in plenty of children that the city and Merlone Geier have no interest in providing other education space for(i.e. SCHOOL BUILDINGS), so why not at least that small concession? Oh yeah, I forgot. Not enough tax revenue from that sort of thing.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 8, 2014 at 6:58 am

369 South San Antonio Road is a historical site, the building not so much, but what happened there is important. So maybe a small museum, rebuilt frontage of the Old Shockley Labs, but the building was built as a fruit drying plant.

The whole south bay is surrounded by ugly tilt ups, beautiful farmland was replaced by tilt ups, tilt ups are cheap nasty buildings. They did serve a purpose like all buildings, quickly built, businesses could move in quickly and could expand cheaply. Land was plenty and cheap.

Buildings are torn down everyday, historical buildings are lost with only a monument if they are lucky. The Shockley site is more historical because of events that took place in the late 50's.

Lots of wonderful old buildings which some were just torn down because they were old, unwanted, or just weren't needed anymore.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 8, 2014 at 8:04 am

Or torn down for greed.Who Cares about quality of life when I can buy off a few council members .Take 2. years to build, dazzling and wasting everyone's time when the city has more pressing problems . Then flip it. We are being conned.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 8, 2014 at 9:22 am

Garrett83 is a registered user.

We live in a free market world where people tear down buildings to build new buildings to provide better retail. Greed, profiting, speculation, or whatever you might call the latest property buzzwords.

This kind of change happens in place that are thriving, income and spending power is high, loads young people with disposable income fresh out of college.

Retailers want their customers to make money, retailers want to open in exciting new places, places are different and vibrant not a run down collection of tired old retail buildings. The developer paid millions for.this mesh mash of buildings so he is going for maximum investment to become profit.

This is how capitalism works.

City and schools get the taxes and fees, residents get a retail area that will improve with time, stores will get space and customers. Customers will spend money here, not there.


Posted by Charles Bransi, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 8, 2014 at 10:58 am

@Garrett83,

I think you are missing the point of the whole exercise. If Merlone Geier (MG) would have proposed a smaller project with a "FAR" less than 1.85, a lot of this discussion would not be happening. The problem is that they decided to go way beyond it with a FAR of 2.82. The general plan specified a maximum of 2.35, and for an FAR above 1.85 to have significant public benefits. These public benefits are needed because MG would use a lot of PUBLIC infrastructure to run his business. They need to use PUBLIC road, PUBLIC environment (like the air we breathe), possibly public parking or other business parking, police, fireman, etc. By increasing the density, they increase the cost of the land around it. They need to mitigate their impact instead of bullying their way in.

The developer paid millions to buy the San Antonio center, sure. But the residents of the crossings paid millions also. The crossing complex and Old Mill has way more than 300 million in real estate. Why can MG railroad the residents ? Why does all the business around would have to suffer because their customer cannot reach their store anymore ?

All these questions can be answered by proper zoning. The City is not doing its homework. They should create a win-win for everybody instead of trying to bully the residents. PPS has stressed the importance of community participation in the great place. I can say that there is a direct confrontation here, and all community input has been ignored.


Posted by Pat, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 8, 2014 at 12:10 pm

I'd like to know just who these people are that defend this type of project. Most likely 25-35 year olds that think they know everything. Can't wait to see them when they have families of their own to think about 10-20 years from now. Especially when their children will be living from home/apartment when they're 40 because they won't be able to afford anything. Someone needs to start making toxic skinny jeans!


Posted by Moffett Resident, a resident of Willowgate
on Mar 8, 2014 at 12:57 pm

What a magical place this "nationally renowned place-making expert" has created for us!

A Jumbotron! Wow! Sports events, movies, ads, and live video of passers-by dominating the shopping experience! Human-size chess pieces! A monument to Shockley!

OK, sarcasm aside, this is fluff.

An FAR of 2.82 is crazy. I cannot imagine any "public benefits" that could justify FAR above 1.85 here.

A road diet for San Antonio and El Camino is an incredibly dumb, destructive idea.

I don't care much about a monument to Shockley. He co-invented the transistor, but there was another less admirable side to him (Web Link).

Refusal to include - or even mention - the Milk Pail's existence was just contemptible.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 8, 2014 at 1:49 pm

Unfortunately Merlone-greed chose Mountain View because of a weak city council.
Was council "dazzled" by the smoke and mirrors?
Why can MG go way over the top with this thing?
All neighborhoods on this side of town will be effected.
After Palo Alto residents sent a clear message to their council, Jay Paul pulled out.
Wish we could do the same.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 8, 2014 at 6:47 pm

Our city has become a puppet of big money, especially big corporate money.
Images supplied by the city?
How much city time (taxpayer money) has been spent for the benefit of this out of town corporation?
A matrimonial structure? Ping pong tables? Please kill this beast!


Posted by Actually, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 8, 2014 at 11:52 pm

To Grammar Police:

Actually, the correct usage is "different from" not "different than."
"Different than" is a mistaken form which is used by many, but for
those who don't like the "dumbing down" of language, the correct form
is preferred. "Other than" is the correct usage for comparisons using "than."

I don't mean to nitpick, but thought you'd appreciate this since you seem
to be someone who appreciates correct grammar.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 9, 2014 at 6:49 am

If you could be a developer, what would you build here? Would it be mini mall, more big box stores, fast food outlets with chain restaurants.

Remember you paid market price for the property, building costs have gone up, market retail trends have changed, you population is younger or older with loads of disposable cash.

You will need to build to draw customers and retailers, something different not the same thing that you see up and down El Camino Real.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 9, 2014 at 8:35 am

No you didn't pay market price for the property.
You paid for a zoned commercial property.
You are now bullying your way to a high density out of scale development.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 9, 2014 at 9:04 am

Garrett83 is a registered user.

The present owner paid more then the original owner, before it was built for retail uses, it was a farm. The was cheap then but for farming it became expensive, today it is more expensive now. Because the property has been purchased, tax rate is higher so the need to find higher rates of return through leases.

I don't see the developer buying commercial property, paying todays prices, keeping a 1950's era retail building or tearing it down for another strip mall.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 9, 2014 at 9:48 am

Fact is you bought a zoned commercial property and drove off business so you could bully a compliant city council and compliant city employes into rezoning the property.
Whether it was once a farm is irrelevant. Phase 1 is just another strip mall with overpriced apartments,
"Dazzling" is just lipstick on the pig.
Read above post about the FAR.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 9, 2014 at 10:11 am

Garrett83 is a registered user.

I didn't buy or own any properties but understand things change. Prices, stores, restaurants, building styles and tastes.

Yes the farms are important, I keep hearing the words to that song. They paved over paradise to put up a parking lot.

Over the years I have seen shopping centers grow or become cheap nasty retail hubs. Only way I think this center to survive is to grow. The whole center.

Yes MG, and the other owners have to work on a detail plan to make this area a major retail hub.

We aren't going to attract major department stores, not very many left.


Posted by MVResident67, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 9, 2014 at 10:29 am

One of the problems with large retail RE-developments is cost to lease retail space. More specifically, the cost to lease a retail space pretty much insures that small independent retailers don't stand a chance of surviving long term. So, what's left? Welcome to generica, land of large and deep pocketed corporate held retailers and restaurants. Ain't progress grand.

Do you hear the bell tolling?


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 9, 2014 at 1:12 pm

Yes, have to ask this corporate entity chose Mountain View for its "dazzle"?
A weak electorate?
We know the city council is pretty weak if it can dazzled by this "place making" nonsense.
How exciting, 6 story office buildings along with a 6 story garage! Can hardly wait!
It's already a done deal. Just going through the motions of "studies" etc.
At least the corner sushi etc didn't sell out.
Hang in there Milk Pail!


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 9, 2014 at 3:08 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Mallerica has been going for 60 years, easy parking, hassle free shopping in big brand new buildings, modern and full of stores. I am sure when San Antonio Center was developed the downtown merchants weren't happy. Some merchants did move to the mall, others didn't. I guessed they figured customers would stay shopping in downtown, but what can you say about all the choices.

Who do you can afford to build all this space for our huge shopping habits as each generation spends at the temple of consume consumption.


Posted by Missouri, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 9, 2014 at 6:13 pm

The Voice- Place Maker Dazzles City Council

M- I've been away for a few weeks and would like to respond to some of the themes in Daniel DeBolt's article and the comments from the public.

@Fred Kent, Project for Public Spaces (pps)
"I think it will be better than Santana Row –"

M- Last month I was at a home goods store in Santana Row and had deli sandwiches while sitting on the lawn at lunchtime. It seems that Fred Kent doesn't believe in trees nor lawn, but rather hardscape. Not very appealing.

@Daniel DeBolt
"Kent removed half the 39 trees from the square."

M- This was opposite the wishes of the City Council planning staff ?

@Councilman Siegel
"A lot of people still need places to shop and buy merchandise -- we're not creating that here," Siegel said.

M- 397,000 sq. ft. of offices with four levels of underground parking, an above ground parking garage with 1,480 parking spaces. 121,000 sq. ft. of commercial, retail and restaurant space. Will restaurants dominate in Phase II or will true merchandiser's occupy this space?

@Bahl
Resident Don Bahl said Kent slaughtered many "sacred cows" in his talk, such as his position that San Antonio Road and El Camino Real be reduced to two lanes in each direction to make pedestrians feel they have more "authority".

M- Does Kent and City Council really believe that the largest retail development ever considered for Mountain View with 1,500 office workers co-mingled with an eight screen cinema and many high capacity restaurants, along with a corporate hotel, allow for a reduction in traffic lanes from three to two on our busiest streets?

@Moffitt Resident
"Refusal to include - or even mention - the Milk Pail's existence was just contemptible."

M- Council may have found it hard to fit the Milk Pail into a conversation that included Jumbotrons, beaches in Detroit, the Plaza at Rockefeller Center and a pop jet fountain.

@Chad Hoke
"Missing in this whole conversation is the issue of traffic. Right now traffic on El Camino and San Antonio Road barely moves at Rush hour."

M- Has City Council directed staff to do both a public streets traffic study as well as an internal traffic study for circulation within the Phase 1 and Phase II projects ? Is there any indication how the office workers and the cinema visitors will share both the internal Phase II roadways and the discharge onto San Antonio Road at 5:30 pm?

@OMV Resident
As Yogi Berra once said, "Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded."

M- Sounds like the Milk Pail !

@DH
The San Antonio Shopping Center redesign may well become a case study of a city council that doesn't understand the needs of its local community, or is not interested, or just lacks common sense.

M- The Pew Charitable Trust Foundation studies the growing problem of municipalities having unfunded pension liabilities. Perhaps developments like Phase I and Phase II are seen as a revenue engine that will keep the 'ship of state' afloat for Mountain View? Is this what the residents want, or the people whose pensions might be at risk?

@Moffitt Resident
A road diet for San Antonio and El Camino is an incredibly dumb, destructive idea.

M- Did Kent really suggest lane reductions ?

@Garrett
"I think with all the residential buildings coming, all those young people who grew up watching cooking shows, know what good food or bad food. Milk Pail Market has something that Safeway doesn't, good choices, good food, good services and different choices."

M- Isn't the Milk Pail being kicked out ?

@Fred Kent, Project for Public Spaces
"When people have visitors, this (Plaza) will be one of the places they'll show them."

M- Castro Street is an exciting place where my family takes our guests. We walk by the barren City Hall Plaza and wonder what the City expected from that space. Now the same concept on steroids is being proposed in Phase II for an office center with restaurants and hotel guests from out of town? What am I missing?

@Daniel DeBolt
"Council member Mike Kasperzak said Merlone Geier had a right to many of the improvements on the privately owned square without city approval."

M- It sounds like Councilman Kasperzak doesn't believe that over the past two years it was necessary for City Staff, Council members and community citizens to attend Visioning meetings, Study Sessions and essentially engage in local government. If City Council members actually believe this, why waste everyone's time? Just give Merlone Geier the keys to the City and ask them be sure to turn off the lights when they leave.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 10, 2014 at 11:01 am

Great comments Missouri.
One aswer as to why this is a runaway train promoted by city employees is the tax benefits that will go to the underfunded pension liabilities.
City employees run the place and city council rubberstamps.
The taxes won't offset the stresses to the area as mentioned above.
We are also being told about a drought and voluntary cutbacks etc.
No reason to curtail this "dazzling" project because of little old drought.
Pop up fountains are no problem. Meanwhile, we are being asked to "voluntarily" cut back back.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 10, 2014 at 11:08 am

@ M

The owner of the Milk Pail purchased his own property, the issue is parking, he relied on the former owners of San Antonio Center for parking.

Sharing agreement for parking must be kept and maintained for the property owners around Phase 1 and 2. San Antonio Center has how many different owners, who in turn own different parts with different parking lots.

The idea development would be a central parking lot with the buildings around it, like a great shopping area in the north. Union Square.

The city doesn't have the power to rearrange private property but has to work with owners and future developers.


Posted by Steve, a resident of another community
on Mar 10, 2014 at 3:00 pm

Can you even imagine it? Our very own city council being DAZZLED by a developer?
Before he was a 'place-making consultant' perhaps he was the gent who sold the emperor that new suit of clothes.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 10, 2014 at 4:00 pm

Wrong, city does have the right to rearrange private property. I cannot build out to my property lines for example.
Now if I had money to lobby the city representatives, I probably could get an exemption or an upgrade in zoning by "dazzling" the council.
The problem is that the city representatives (the residents are the city)
seem to be representing the needs and wishes of the developer's "dazzle", and are ignoring the needs and wishes of the city.


Posted by Mr Adviceo, a resident of Bailey Park
on Mar 10, 2014 at 8:06 pm

Bulldoze / Scrape the old to make way for the NEW, it's called PROGRESS, don't get in the way.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 11, 2014 at 6:44 am

The religion of progress. Bulldoze anything that stands in the way. Been pretty much the attitude of merlone under the "dazzle".


Posted by Steve, a resident of another community
on Mar 11, 2014 at 2:39 pm

"If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle 'em with b******t"- Old proverb.
Or in the case of Mtn View city government, just go ahead and dazzle them with b******t.


Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 11, 2014 at 2:53 pm

All major roads are getting a road diet, haven't y'all heard? California St., the southern end of Castro St., likely even ECR, and many more! It's supposedly to improve the bikability at the expense of car traffic, and thus also at the expense of commerce. Bikes need great things for them, better, separate bikeways, removed from the noise, pollution and danger of cars, trucks, and buses. And cars need to be accommodated where we shop in bulk, as at WalMart, Trader Joe's, etc. It worked better for that type of shopping when big stores were flocked together and one could easily repark for each. Now we're losing Ross and the biggest, best BevMo. So as we are forced to change, we must not incorporate huge empty spaces between what we go there for. Large spaces between tall concrete & glass structures dwarf the people and make for an imposing style akin to what Hitler had build, as well as others through out history. The director of Hunger Games did it on purpose in Panen to emphasize the powerlessness of the people vs. the government. Each individual is dwarfed. It's too far to walk across to continue shopping, especially while you're carrying merchandise, and very impossible for many with an inability to walk very far. I prefer the scale of Santana Row. If we're converting to small shops, have many of them in a short space to make it worth walking through. Have slow streets lined with handicapped parking through out, as at Santana Row. There are nice places to sit out, sun & shade, some grass, lots of flowers, needs dedicated bike paths, etc. Not too bad. But it could do better with more parking. But San Antonio has a FAR that is horrible. It is wrong. Help come forward with candidates who will represent the people. Find a candidate who not only listens, but whose mission is to do the will of the people, not their own agenda. Help find candidates who will not switch up on us after the election. All of us need to get to work on this ASAP. Share your ideas here. In a month or two I will have a website designed for your input, one much like "PaloAltoVIlle" that has helped that city get the will of the people accomplished. Who can you find that will be a council member like John McAlister, who serves us? He, and three others like him, will give us the majority on the council we need and have needed to stop the ugly, oversized, poorly thought through building. Find candidates and save our MV!


Posted by Lucas Ramirez, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 11, 2014 at 5:10 pm

I would encourage anyone who is concerned about traffic (not only near San Antonio but throughout the City as well) to attend the upcoming Civility Roundtable on Wednesday, March 26 at the Mountain View Senior Center, 7-9pm. This event will focus on traffic and parking. Admission is free, and your opinions and ideas would be very welcome! Event details here: Web Link


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 11, 2014 at 5:42 pm

Thank you Linda for yor comments and yes the upcoming elections are crucial. You can bet Merlone et al will have candidates!
Don' t see much use for a time wasting "civility" round table, other than deflect from the real issues!


Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 11, 2014 at 8:36 pm

John, et al:

We opposing unrepresentative government, building ugly, overly density stupid growth, could all show up at the "Round Table" and pass a sign up sheet amongst ourselves. The whole crowd. Let's all help pass around a sign up sheet that would allow us to organize ourselves and our movement to elect better city council members by listing our e-mail addresses, and names, and phone #s optional, and make sure we collect at the end of the evening what we started passing around at the beginning of the evening. Then we'll unite on e-mail and begin working for the best candidates. I know of two and need all of you who think as I do to help find one more extremely excellent candidate.

See you at the "Round Table."


Posted by Weird Mountain View, a resident of Castro City
on Mar 12, 2014 at 8:43 am

"Hard to be humble when you stuntin' on a jumbotron." -Kanye West, Devil in a New Dress #MountainView #placemaking


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 12, 2014 at 11:38 am

Do you remember how San Antonio Center built, not very fun if you had to walk across vast asphalt parking lots, still had place because certain businesses but other then that wasn't special.

The idea with Emery Bay, Santana Row and the planned phase 2 is to follow European street/plaza model, 4 to 6 story buildings on streets that are narrow. I would imagine the plaza will be used for concerts, fairs, festivals or movies, attract people. Parking will be in structures and underground.

The other way is more big box stores spread out over vast parking lots filled with fast food places. Even grouped big box stores don't really make the human touch when you have large walls vast empty spaces, yes you can see the sky.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Whisman Station
on Mar 12, 2014 at 1:10 pm

@Linda Curtis, did you really invoke Hitler?


Posted by Observer, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 12, 2014 at 1:51 pm

I just put a chair on my patio... why don't I feel like I'm in Italy?


Posted by @Observer, a resident of Whisman Station
on Mar 12, 2014 at 1:57 pm

Too many trees, clearly.


Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 12, 2014 at 3:11 pm

Yes I did. Watch the after features on a BluRay of Hunger Games and hear about how the tall buildings, with the large space in the middle, was the perfect choice by the director, Gary Ross, to show the imposing nature of the capitol city of Panen. They needed something to illustrate how cold and empty that dictatorship was and how insignificant each individual was. Whereas, if we had places on both sides of a little street, and not built so high, we would lots of choices immediately adjacent each other for our convenience. There still could be tables and chairs, flowers, tree, grass, etc., just like Santana Row. Less height, more sunny and more privacy.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 12, 2014 at 3:38 pm

"plaza will be used for concerts, fairs, festivals or movies" yes merlone greed is all for that! Someone is living in a dreamworld, comments reflect that.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 12, 2014 at 4:04 pm

I have been places that have squares, plazas or some kind of space in a shopping area. Those places were used for concerts, fairs and festivals, or whatever use the community decided for the space.

It seem our space is devoted to cars, or just miles of strip malls, or large big box stores.

Even in Italy they have family homes, but people still go out shopping, eating, and spend time in the community. Why not make the developer building community enhancing spaces like plazas.

Web Link

The above is of a square.


Posted by Jo, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 12, 2014 at 4:06 pm

Place making expertise in NYC of SFO is not relevant to place making in Mountain View. Milk Pail is already bringing people to the area from miles around. We don't need an electronic bill board or a new farmer's marker to do that. Mountain View already has a farmer's market every Sunday near Castro. Do the developers even know anything about our community? They are willing to pay for a place-making consultant but not LISTEN to the long time residents who are championing 'sensible' development, keeping Milk Pail, and allowing pedestrian and bike friendly development. So tiring to just be heard - if 700 signatures do not even get mentioned. Who needs new cinemas when Shoreline barely breaks even. Why do we need more hotel rooms when El Camino has several hotels in each block, some of which were torn down recently to put up new housing units. I vote for an open garden, community space, traffic solutions to already blocked San Antonia to 101 section, and nothing taller than 2 storeys. We are not Manhattan. We are Mountain View, soon to be with no mountain visible because we want tall buildings mindlessly.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 12, 2014 at 4:52 pm

I think MG or any developer would be trying to crate something along the lines like this.

Web Link

Note only the building facing the market square is what I am pointing out, notice the heights and windows.

Web Link

Notice the green space, the buildings.

Most likely the buildings will be built steel, why not put skin over the steel. The height can be lowered.

You building parking under all this and I think people have no problem with seeing sky.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 12, 2014 at 4:59 pm

Or is the future of San Antonio Center.

Web Link


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 12, 2014 at 5:00 pm

Merlone greed is trying to "crate" something similar to phase 1,except bigger, taller and more sterile. A 1700 car parking garage? Place making? Puleeeze! Nothing but propaganda.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 12, 2014 at 5:12 pm

I will tell people we need to built transit centered development but we still need to park cars until transit options are built.

In the meantime 1700 spaces for cars are still required, even in most cities that have good transit, cars are still needed.


Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 12, 2014 at 6:20 pm

Of all the Web Links in this discussion, the one with the more horribly ugly, characterless, way too tall, boring, and just gross is the Web Link that takes you to the article that has illustrations of what is planned for San Antonio! How depressing. Instead, give the Milk Pail more parking (let the owner of it buy it or lease it, whatever) but save it. And give the place a sense of closeness with a variety of interesting stores in close proximity to each other, lined up beside each other & across from each other. Not a long empty walk in the shade from the tall blank buildings towering over us.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 13, 2014 at 11:38 am

Like I said before, if phase one is any indication of what phase two is going to be like, the dazzle will be over in a flash!

Tall buildings, crowded parking, pedestrians beware! Stressful just to pull into the central parking lot, competing with renters for parking. Oh yea gorgot, we're suppossed to take the "22" to go shopping! Or Caltrain!
Destroying a Eurepeon open air market that is already here--Milk Pail. Put in a fake one, like the fake dog park, fake trees, fake jumbotron, a fake people space and on and on.

Linda you are right about the imense scale of the buildings being put on the site. overwhelming for the area, for the neighborhoods, for the city.
The historical reference is accurate.


Posted by Steve, a resident of another community
on Mar 13, 2014 at 3:07 pm

Missing the most important point: The developer puts on a dog-and-pony show, and our civic leaders say "ooooh! ahhhhhh!" instead of recognizing it for the empty crap that it is.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 13, 2014 at 4:19 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Milk Pail is a nice open air market, but hoping somehow the idea of having a real European style market, with stalks and shops. Pike's Place Public Market to The (Camden) Locks market, or The Queen (Elizabeth) market.

Buildings, stalls and tents sellings household goods, dry goods, fresh food and various items. If you think parking and traffic is bad, weekends at the market was a nightmare
People with dogs, children and handcarts but that is what the market was about.

You had tall buildings that were 2 to 4 stories, small streets and alleys, noise and sticky shoes.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 13, 2014 at 7:46 pm

So the development council was dazzled by a promise of a "pike place" or Camden or queen whatever?

The buildings are over 100 feet tall! This is not going to be a marketplace! The dazzle was just that dazzle!

A city council determined to push the interests of big developers over local institutions like the Milk Pail, and it seems like the above comment or is the one who is "dazzled"


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2014 at 6:19 am

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Tell you the every market have been to didn't need jumbotrons, what they did have was place. I don't see anything with building high rent upper floors just to create lower rent ground floor.space.

Those markets I mentioned have been around for over 100 years or longer, just not talking buildings, families have been selling goods for generations. Some of those markets had go build, or find ways to keep going or close.

We had many markets in this country, Pike's in Seattle being the most famous, Pittsburgh had a large market which was torn down for a failed shopping center. With the food culture, the desire to have small businesses and something different.

Instead of jumbotron, bookstore.. If you want movies in plaza, blow up movie screen. MG could use its will to get a certain meat market back.

Or strip mall with.chain stores, fast food and parking lots.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 14, 2014 at 10:25 am

What???
Not understanding, as your comments are dazzle and tend to kill discussion, as in many other threads.


Posted by village.sanantonio, a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2014 at 12:45 pm

Comments from a neighboring city that shares San Antonio Road...

After seeing phase-1 San Antonio shopping center and the existing
traffic on San Antonio road, MV city council is supporting the phase-2
colossus ? This is unbelievable!

Between Amazon, Google express, gazillion good restaurants and
shopping that exist already around the neighborhood...
who needs more?

A jumbotron? What? Is this a neighborhood or a circus? Or we having
a carnival everyday? Why not add an amusement park with roller
coaster rides everyday? May be all these distractions will help
distract the visitors from the unsightly apartments from phase-1 ...
Add giant redwoods for the cover-up... not jumbotrons!

With all due respect Garrett83, please do not post any
response... I have read your countless other posts already.
You are not helping in anyway.. not even the developers.
Free speech I support ... but too much of free speech is
not helpful :-)


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2014 at 1:29 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

I am talking about Public Markets or Market Halls that once dotted the landscape, now why I came up with an idea like this. Esther's, the meat market that stood across the street in Mountain View and Cho's Dim Sum in Palo Allto.

Even the Milk Pail might do well with a Public Market instead of a Burger King.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 14, 2014 at 2:38 pm

Of course "garret is going to respond!
"Garret" must be some kind of troll that stifles discussion on these boards.

yes village.sanantonio our city council is moving forward with the circus for the area,
MG has promised tax benefits and world class and regional destinations.

All we are going to get is a bigger phase 1. A parking lot surrounded by bigger buildings. only consolation is that the corner properties didn't sell out, so we won't have a "gateway" blight like the corner of El Camino and San Antonio. Calling it a village doesn't make it so.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2014 at 3:19 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Village is just a generic name, knew someone who moved Dorchester Square, no square or Lakeside just there was no lake. It sells, just like any name. I am MG paid someone to figure out village sells more the square, park, plaza or field.

Retailers are disappearing, Staples is closing stores, Safeway got purchased by Albertson and walk into most suburban malls you will find empty stores. Unless you are a mega center, high income center or a really nice mall with the right boxes. Boxes are the number of anchor stores.

Most malls are indoor, 2 floors of shopping on major highways. San Antonio tried being a power center but afraid it is not near freeway or even has great freeway frontage.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2014 at 3:27 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

I meant to say someone paid MG to figure out a name.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 14, 2014 at 4:01 pm

"Garret" Must have some automatic response button called chiberish.


Posted by village.sanantonio, a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2014 at 4:06 pm


John, Nothing is cast in concrete :-) yet.
The traffic choke should make the city council go back to
the drawing board. No dazzling with Jumbotron.
There is still hope...

Here is the Los Altos view of development -- a great
read: downtown_land_use_and_economic_revitalization_plans.pdf
You may cut and paste this link:
"Web Link"
---------------


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 14, 2014 at 4:07 pm

Or in place of gibberish should we say dazzle!
The amount of comments on all the boards by "garret" is kind of like the relentless pressure that developers can put on the city.
Residents have to work, raise families, pay taxes and mortgages.
Developers have full time staff to relentlessly lobby the city employees and representatives with "dazzle".
Unfortunately, we trust our elected officials to do the right thing by us, this is a giant fail as fair as that goes.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2014 at 4:46 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

We aren't Los Altos, Los Gatos, Palo Alto or one of the many high income cities, we aren't small or cute. Don't pin your hopes attracting high end boutiques or Rodeo Dr stores on San Antonio Rd, suggest you stick with low end stores.
Didn't expect dazzle or glamour just some different then Ross, Dollar Stores or outdated retail outlets. Most of won't come until large mall like structure is built.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 14, 2014 at 9:20 pm

As usual "garret" is way off base.
According to merlone greed the village of San Antonio is"Located in the regional shopping destination of the affluent and well-established city of Mountain View at the northern end of Silicon Valley.

We work hard to make our city livable and merlone et al pick up the gravy


Posted by DC, a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 14, 2014 at 9:56 pm

Wow lots of comments. I just hope San Antonio becomes as great as Castro is. Then Castro can go back to the quiet street it was. I spent 20 min looking for those available parking spaces fri evening. 10 were driving up the multilevel parking lot with 6 cars in front stopping for a min when one car decided to wait. I made it to the top where one last space was available. Sorry to the 9 cars behind me. What a poor design of a parking lot, one car one direction no way to turn about.


Posted by Garett, a resident of another community
on Mar 15, 2014 at 6:58 am

Checked out the Los Alto Downtown Plan, really nice, good fit for Los Alto, nice intersections and nice mix of residential, commercial and some offices. Downtown Los Alto is different then the nearly 10 acre site at San Antonio Center.

Los Altos is to gain some really good businesses because of the prestige and place. Lots has taken the time, the care and patients to protect the village.

I know San Antonio Center was never meant to be a village, it is a 1950's car center shopping center, which Downtown Los Altos is not.

It would make no sense to even try to turn San Antonio Center into another Los Altos Village.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 15, 2014 at 7:06 am

Patience instead of patients that Los Altos has taken the time to protect its place, The Village.


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 15, 2014 at 8:08 am

Garrett starts early with the meandering posts for the day


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 15, 2014 at 8:15 am

The point of the Los Altos link is that they have a plan that fits the area.
Our city council , the majority anyway, are dazzled by whatever hugely
densely out of scale development that the developer wants to shoe horn
to the area. To heckler with plans, to heckler with the residents.
The poor developer is being held up!


Posted by Carless Californian, a resident of another community
on Mar 15, 2014 at 11:54 am

There are a lot of people, including residents and people who would like to be residents, that are in favor of tall, dense, urban village style shopping centers. Places that can be destinations, to have dates and meet friends, check out a little festival or a movie, or just enjoy the great weather we have, and then do some errands before heading home. Especially if home is a five minute walk away.

With its access to a Caltrain station, multiple shuttles and VTA bus lines, and its large acreage, San Antonio is a great place to do this, one of the best for creating a place that people can get to and from without a car, and even live in without needing a car.

And if four to eight stories isn't out of place at Santana Row, it's certainly not going to be out of place in the middle of this big shopping area either. There's plenty of space for taller buildings without making an oppressive feel. Tall buildings done well, with lots of visual interest and street interaction actually give places vitality (see again, Santana Row). Honestly, the hysteria about building heights is the most puzzling of all the complaints that come up whenever new developments are talked about.

Also, the people who keep ragging on Garrett: Grow up. He does comment a lot because he cares about these issues. If you bothered to read what he writes, you'd see a common thread, sometimes obscured a bit by typos and incomplete thoughts, but perfectly understandable if you have any interest in actually listening. He's actually a fairly moderate voice, calling for modest infill development. Things that use the space more efficiently than the outdated 50s and 60s strip malls and 80s&90s big box centers, but still make room for parks, local retail, sunlight, and other nice things. He doesn't blindly approve of the developers plans; usually he wants to scale them down--too much, in my opinion--just not as much as the slow-growthers are willing to grudgingly tolerate. By insulting him and mis-characterizing his position you just make yourselves look petty and not worth paying attention to.


Posted by Linda curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 15, 2014 at 1:03 pm

The problem is that this will not be "Tall buildings well done" but towering buildings poorly done: No character, not even that of Santana Row. Just flat and tall with a lot of windows reflecting glare down on us with people staring down upon us. Not a pleasant place to be at all. At least the big box stores with ample parking served the needs of high quantity shopping. This will not be convenient if you buy much: Too hard to carry to public transit and all that bother.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 15, 2014 at 1:19 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Thank you and to those who have to put in with Garrett the Troll. I still can keep my sense of humor.

I work so many hours, typing on a cell phone and within 5 miuntes to write a opinion, thought and my two cents worth.

I don't the current plan is all that but I am not the planning or spending the huge.sums of capital.


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 15, 2014 at 1:34 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Oops left out a word great, the current plan is not that great. I find the windows too much glass, more tradional design and wider interior walkways but then again it is plan. Build it but make it last.

The Jumbotron seems silly but fountains are a nice feature, if anything that will draw people is the businesses and when I mean by that small friendly businesses.

Another Big Box store with loads of parking, blank walls and when the store shuts down for good. You have a empty box store sitting idle.


Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 15, 2014 at 1:55 pm

Visit the website, a little ways above, that shows how Los Altos will be ruined. It starts the picture show with one and two story charming little stuff that would be enjoyable (that they are not building), but look further and see that everything we love about the village will be replaced with the same ugly, high, modern stack and pack. It looks like wings ready for flight instead of roofs. Also looks like big boxes with over sized lids. Not inviting or pleasant. Why destroy a lovely village, with a good feel, only to replace it with stuff that makes it look like the big City of San Francisco. All built right to the sidewalk, as the library will be (multistory, too) when the one that works so well is torn down. Good luck staying together, families, while each of you in the family search different collections: You won't even be on the same floor any more. Spend huge money to wreck the good feel and great lay out of the best library ever. Same goes for the town of Los Altos!


Posted by John, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 15, 2014 at 2:16 pm

Grow up to deal with Garret the troll? I finally had enough and sorry if it looks petty. But every topic? How many posts are there from this person on the threads? Enough already.
Or just ignore the hundreds of aimless postings on every town square topic in all three forums.
And yes I know it's a done deal, council has the majority to push the dazzle through. It's frustrating to see corporate interests given so much consideration over residents.

What council can do, beyond the dazzle, is to bring it up for a referendum. Palo Alto did it. Menlo Park is gathering signatures for the massive project on Stanford property on El Camino.

The one or two people in this town that don't have cars can vote too!
I'm out.


Posted by Eve of Destruction, a resident of another community
on Mar 15, 2014 at 5:37 pm

Los Altos is losing its village flavor. The council just approved a 4-story box "designed" by the Hayes Group at the corner of San Antonio and First Street, which already is lined with new 3- and 4-story developments. At San Antonio and Main is a humongous hotel, squeezed on a tiny triangle of land.

As for San Antonio Village, I've noticed that since it's been populated, it usually takes 2 light changes (heading east on San Antonio) to get across El Camino. Can't wait to see what traffic will be like when Phase II is completed.


Posted by Sheryl, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 15, 2014 at 7:09 pm

I live in San Antonio Place, not the Crossings. My community is not listed here. (MV Voice, have you been listening?) I shop at the Milk Pail several times a week. It is my favorite store in Mountain View and I highly recommend it to all my friends and everybody else. I am ashamed about what Mountain View is doing to this community resource. Really a community resource and not just a grocery store. They raise money for local charities and schools as well as the Red Cross, etc., etc. But this article is unreal. The Village is hideous. The architect has no sense of design and is far from being any kind of an artist. I have no idea why anybody thinks it's so great. This is ruining my neighborhood.


Posted by Observer, a resident of another community
on Mar 16, 2014 at 1:18 am

I sure hope the Milk Pail owner has been consulting a lawyer with expertise in real property rights. It looks to me like he might have some prescriptive easement claims to part of the adjacent land. He said the city at one point required the property owner to provide him with a parking lease. There must have been a reason. Why would that requirement lapse? By denying him access to parking now, the city and developer are devaluing his land. Wasn't there originally street parking along California Street? When that was removed to widen the street, this harmed the land owners along the street. Was compensation paid? Has he been encouraged to build his business all this time on a false basis due to plans made by the city to now displace him? He owns the land. Even if he is going to sell it, this sort of an easement or other rights adds greatly to the value of the land. Some research is indicated to find out what went on here. All he needs is a bit of the land from the other owner to keep the driveway working and more parking available to Milk Pail. The city is wrong to say it has no ability to intervene. A lawyer may be able to provide a basis for a lawsuit.


Posted by idbirds, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 16, 2014 at 5:43 am

I live in Los Altos. Downtown Los Altos is being ruined (is ruined) by exactly the same thing that this development is doing/going to do. I recently sold my home and am moving to Willow Glen. It's still a nice community, like Los Altos was once, and has an outstanding community downtown street (Lincoln Avenue).

Do people really want to live and shop in a place such as is being proposed? What about the folks who don't want to and just want to get by on El Camino or San Antonio Road?

No thanks!


Posted by Pam Sandhu, a resident of Castro City
on Mar 16, 2014 at 9:20 am

Let's face its, we are a society of car lovers and as such we as a populace drive a mile or two or ten unlike any other society in the world. The whole idea of this kind of development is to get us out of our cars and mix living space with retail and entertainment. If you don't want to wait an extra 2 or 3 minutes at a red light intersection then take an alternate route. I've lived in this area all of my life, El Camino Real has never been the fastest route and its purpose is to connect all of our cities together but it is an eye sore and frankly I'm relieved to finally see some modern mixed use development that includes walkable entertainment, retail, grocery and housing replace the largely cement parking lots of the former Sears and CVS location.


Posted by Tommy_g, a resident of St. Francis Acres
on Mar 16, 2014 at 1:11 pm

Tell google to fund it. Then it'll be a good idea.


Posted by Moffett Resident, a resident of Willowgate
on Mar 16, 2014 at 1:45 pm

Pam - Whether we like it or not, autos are going to be our primary mode of transportation for a long time.

The intersection of El Camino and San Antonio is already congested (measured at "Level of Service F" for some commute times). San Antonio phase 1 has made it worse, and phase 2 will make it worse still. And we can expect a future cumulative effect from the projects already approved, but not yet built, along El Camino.

Congestion is going to get worse. The question here is "how much worse, and how quickly," and that's a direct result of the density allowed to developers.

I'm all for a bike-friendly, pedestrian-friendly city, and I agree that the old Sears center was unsightly. But it's not a question of "either/or," as in either be stuck with the old uses or else accept the developer's proposal.

It's all about the money, of course. Merlone-Geier wants to maximize profits, by putting in all the rentable space they possibly can. That's where I have a problem. The proposed density is just plain excessive.

Unfortunately, Planning and the present City Council have a record of giving developers pretty much whatever they want. The next election can't come soon enough.


Posted by village.sanantonio, a resident of another community
on Mar 16, 2014 at 1:50 pm


San Antonio Shopping center should be just a shopping center.
The only mistake made in phase-1 was the unsightly over-the-top,
over-priced, imposing box-apartments.

Please show restraint and replace the
phase-2 with a multi-acre park and some shops.
No multi-story office buildings.
No multi-story parking garages.
No cinemas.
No multi-story hotel.
These structures DO NOT belong in this area.
Referendum needed like Palo Alto or Menlo Park?

For the profit of a few, why should the rest of the
community suffer due to congested traffic, pollution
from emission etc. Or are we seeing the "might is
right" playing out here?

All big companies in Mountain View including the greatest
company ever built Google, please plan ahead about
unprecedented growth. Growing into residential
communities is not democratic and does not wear
well on mightily successful enterprises. Legacy
is more important than success.

And City council can't keep rezoning and falling back
on that count forever.

Is democracy a myth? Is deep-pockets the reality?
----------------


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 16, 2014 at 3:57 pm

Some points to point out about San Antonio Center.

During the late 70's and most of the 80's, was home to 3 box anchors, did some research which was the average suburban mall the time. Malls during that time were going indoor with 2 levels of shopping, San Antonio didn't keep up with the new trend.

New malls were being built next to freeway exits, Sunnyvale Town Center and San Antonio were not near any freeway frontage. Stanford Mall is different, had really good upscale tenant list, good box anchors. Growth of wealth in the area played a major role, keeping it small and centering it on high income earners.

San Antonio Center currently has 3 major retailers, Kohl's, Target and Wal Mart, still people are drawn to the center but it hasn't had a major improvement since Phase 1, before that was the Trader Joe's and Wal Mart expansion.


Posted by Old Ben, a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 16, 2014 at 10:59 pm

That's.Mountain View in a nutshell: Kohl's, Target, and Walmart. That's who you are.


Posted by Old Ben, a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 17, 2014 at 2:07 am

I've arrived! I have a homophobic impostor, probably a sock puppet for some developer afraid of the public getting wind of the full extent of TCE contamination in this overpriced little town.


Posted by Disciple of Garrett(83), a resident of another community
on Mar 17, 2014 at 11:26 am

Garrett,

Thanks for your tireless efforts to make Mountain View a better place to live


Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 17, 2014 at 3:00 pm

The web site above will show that all the building in the Civic Ctr of Los Altos and all the triangle of buildings between First ST. and San Antonio and State St. (including it) will be torn completely down for the flip up ugly tall growth. So much to love about what it is now. So much to hate about what it will become. It's already been approved. And in MV, I'm told it's already too late for any referendums for November's election.


Posted by Tom/crossings resident, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 17, 2014 at 4:25 pm

For some time I've been pretty pleased with our city council's work. Generally speaking, we have to say that Mt. view as a city is doing very well.
However with this San Antonio corner project and especially the Milk Pail market they are showing their weakness. The developers ARE ONLY interested in their agenda and profit. The only time they make any changes is when the council forces them to and then it's the bare minimum.
The council is giving them way to much and asking way to little. How can they not force the developers to provide parking for the milk pail? And how can the council not see the real traffic problems that are going to be created? Any one of them just needs to drive on san antonio or El camino at either morning or evening commute times right now, not too mention when another couple of thousand cars are added to the mix.
One thing that tends to happen is that the governments start to forget the actual people who they work for and elect them. So much of their input comes from big money and special interest now that I'm afraid they have forgotten who they work for.


Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 17, 2014 at 5:21 pm

The City Council does know about the increased traffic gridlock. When John Inks was mayor, he spent time with me explaining to me that it is "intention gridlock" to get people out of their cars and onto buses (which will also be caught in it, but then maybe 2/3 of the lanes on ECR will be converted to dedicated bus lanes to help them and hurt cars and trucks worse). This is even more important at Castro and ECR, where there are only buses for public transit and where the City Council is doing even worse... Forget the freedom driving affords us, even if you use an electric car, as this is all about control and observing what people are doing and where they are going and when. Blink and democracy is gone.


Posted by village.sanantonio, a resident of another community
on Mar 17, 2014 at 6:24 pm


Hmm... LInda Curtis.. based on your posting above,
this is not democracy.
City Council is dictating what citizens should do.
Also, the City Council is happily taking dictation from
developers :-(

So only the developers and their investors
are truly free :-)


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 17, 2014 at 7:37 pm

So democracy means driving a car and not having to sit in traffic You should be thankful there is traffic which means people are working and making money.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 17, 2014 at 7:43 pm

When it comes to greed, I would put developers low down on the pole. Oil, Banks, Insurance, Health and Tobacco Companies.

At lease a developer might build something where I can shop, eat, attend a movies, and spend money. People need jobs.


Posted by Moffett Resident, a resident of Willowgate
on Mar 17, 2014 at 11:44 pm

Garrett - You need to think this one through.

All of your greed factions - oil, banks, insurance, health care - try to make as much money as possible by supplying things that we pretty much need to have, to live decently (except tobacco). It's their job. It's called "fiduciary responsibility" to the stockholders.

Likewise, EXACTLY, housing. People need housing. It's in short supply, and there is a lot of money to be made. Developers are no better than the others you've listed. They are just doing their job.

Unfortunately, maximizing developer profits does not necessarily work to the benefit of the community. On the contrary, in fact.

Greed is greed. It's the responsibility of city staff and city council to moderate this, and they are doing a poor job of it.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 18, 2014 at 12:18 pm

I agree the developers are greedy, but then again they are in the one of the most expensive land markets in the U.S., the cost of building here is high also. Maybe on top of the idea profit they have to figure out to make the project viable in the long term.

Developers look for trends, like Fred Kent the place making guy, the developer will be taking the rest to find tenants for those stores. The office will have no problem filling up, and the city has been looking for a hotel for years.

Yes common parking area will help Milk Pail and other businesses to keep going, THIS must be a condition set in the permit.

It is a shopping center, shopping centers must find ways to attract customers, not to mention businesses. Businesses that will drawl other businesses. Yes can always shop elsewhere, but you wouldn't you want them to within the city, again tax money.

Also want to point out the this area becomes attractive to property developers who will buy property which in turn will become more valuable. Los Alto School District gets a tax windfall.

Yes they do need to have a school.

So yes developers are greedy in a long list of greed, they aren't your friends either but then again like any business they have the capital to build on this corner.

I read someone in the newspapers that they fully fund their projects


Posted by local-rez, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 19, 2014 at 8:58 am

All you pure-ists, long time locals, traffic fear-ists, and OMG where am I gonna get my apple and tomato people...all that matters is...

for homeowners...nicer area = higher desirability = high demand + Google moving in = cha-ching!!!

Momma needs a 5 car garage in the real world, can't they build it faster?


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 19, 2014 at 1:57 pm

Add another underground level to the parking garage for PRT cars, design San San Center Center to be a major PRT station, tracks to Google, down El Camino Real, down Central Expressway and to other points.


Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 20, 2014 at 2:47 pm

Don't you all see? The more they tear down the older stuff and build the new stuff (that cannot cover the demand enough anyway because they just keep adding more and more jobs) the more the prices to buy/rent goes up, up, up! But the finishes are fine (for now) and the space is small. If we leave some older stuff alone, one could get their foot in the door, and do without the finishes until they save up to redo them themselves. Instead, build some fancy small stuff, that will be out of date before most of you seem to realize, and you will get a 2 bedroom with no yard, stacked over with adjoining apartments, on the noisy railways & Central Expressway, for $8,000.00/month. I manage & and am slowly buying (by working full time) 2 four-plexes, one story, one adjoining wall, nice gardens all around, some private storage areas and garages and off street parking provided for all, nicely kept, sunny and cheery with hardwood floors, new appliances, some with vaulted ceilings and 4 closets, with walk in closets in each bedroom, over 1,200 SQ. ft. FOR $1,200/month, electricity provided, plus money back to you if you conserve enough electricity to contribute to the grid, as each unit gets 9 solar panels, maintenance paid for by me. Deal, huh? I do this for the people living there, not for profit. But the big builds are closing me down by overrunning my quiet, little street and boxing in our beautiful oasis. In short, wipe out me & the rest of us running buildings from the '60s, '70s, '80s, etc., and affordable housing becomes much, much, more limited in MV.


Posted by village.sanantonio, a resident of another community
on Mar 20, 2014 at 4:27 pm


Why not build 10+ story office buildings and
apartment buildings all in North Bayshore?
Employees can then live close to their offices.
Less traffic for all. Google, the best company
ever built already proposed this idea. The
city council turned it down.

Also build 10+ stories of offices and apartments
along 101 as much as possible. The employer could run
shuttles along 101.

Number of single family homes are relatively small.
The residents of these homes won't be causing much
more traffic. Also number of single family units are
capped by zoning etc. So the existing neighborhoods
can be preserved and the traffic kept in check.

Instead of thinking along the lines above...
traffic has been made into a problem for
everyone by building San Antonio Center with no
freeway access that is close enough. The city council
calls San Antonio Center as the GATEWAY to Mountain View.
No, looking where the traffic is... it will be
called the GRID-LOCK to Mountain View. The surrounding
neighborhoods will be destroyed as well in the process.
WHY DO THIS? Once this traffic mess is created,
there is no turning back. Oh what a LEGACY...


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2014 at 9:00 am

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Something to point out here, not everyone works for Google, great company but still not everyone wants to work for Google. Building units of housing near jobs is old but building jobs near housing works also, see San Antonio phase 2. Idea is to link transportation alternatives to housing/jobs/commercial areas instead of relying on single vehicle trips.


Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 22, 2014 at 10:36 am

Trouble is adding so much housing in the heart of things adds more traffic to roadways than it does to any public transit. Think about it: How many people work along ECR or anywhere any VTA buses go? Or at the right time of day? And for every one in a household who does work near a bus line, there are all the rest in that family who do not. For some who could get to work by transit, they need their cars for their job performance, or need to get there faster, as with emergency responders such as surgeons, firemen, police, etc., even TV crews, all sorts of repair people, and don't forget soccer moms with more than one child going different places, etc., = many more folks than one might think of. So build by Google and other big companies, so these folks flow out of those areas while their employees flow in (reverse the gridlock), but drop this housing push for along ECR! That is endless gridlock and unsafe should an evacuation be needed: We do live in an earthquake area, so fire and tidal wave problems require sufficient open roadways for us all to exit in a hurry. Who plans to ride the bus in that scenario?


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2014 at 12:56 pm

Garrett83 is a registered user.

We already have people in many profession who do that long drive in for reason that housing costs fit their budget.

Remember capping the pay at ECH, asking city employees to take pay and penison cuts or people who are make 15.00 dollars an hour to pay more in rent.

We don't have many alternatives for those who don't to drive in or even take the chance to become less.

Yes we aren't going to get rid of cars but to reduce the thousands of solo drivers.


Posted by Public Service Announcement, a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2014 at 1:46 pm

The Draft EIR for San Antonio Phase II is available here:

Web Link


Posted by village.sanantonio, a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2014 at 5:16 pm

Posted by Public Service Announcement, a resident of another community
The Draft EIR for San Antonio Phase II is available here:
Web Link

Response from a community that shares San Antonio Road...
Thank you for the link!
In summary...
with phase-2, you are going from the existing
60,000 sqft approx to
1.2 MILLION sqft
on the 9.9 acre area.
Just stop and think about this expansion!!

The report says there will be no impact.
Or whatever impact there is, it can be mitigated
to an insignificant level!!

I wonder who can really believe this logic.
2 multi-story office buildings, multi-story hotel
and multi-screen theater. But no impact!

Brace yourself for phase-2:
more pollution
more traffic gridlock (it is unbearable already!)
more unsightly structures
and more!!

This whole development issue is begin to look
like a serious issue of civil rights violation..
civil rights violation of the common citizens
and residents.
--------------------


Posted by Public Service Announcement, a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2014 at 5:40 pm

village.san.antonio

Actually, the EIR does mention one area very significant impacted even after mitigation: traffic at the San Antonio and El Camino Real intersection.




Posted by Linda Curtis, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 22, 2014 at 5:43 pm

I believe you are totally correct on everything you just stated village.sanantonio!

Every time the City of MV wants to do something they just change the zoning and go. Environmental Commissioners who study the proposed changes and see the quality of life issues with the planned changes cannot stand up to them because they are appointed by the City Council! Sounds like we need to change that and the whole ease of zoning change allowed. Time to put growth on a moratorium as did Palo Alto before everything we have spent out lives building up for our futures are totally wrecked. Let some new corporations build in Tracy or Stockton or Livermore or wherever and then their employees could have huge beautiful and affordable homes out there and no ruining what we here have spent out lives building. Yes- ruining the ability to drive around with ease, to breathe with ease, to see the sky in all directions, to enjoy quiet, and have only short lines at supporting businesses in this area. Denial doesn't cut it. "Mitigation" is always claimed and always a lie. Let's come together to demand a moratorium. I will build a website called something like: "Mountain View HiDensity Opposition" and we can all sign a petition. Let's get everyone we know that to sign and get thousands of signatures. It will be ready in a month or so... I'll let y'all know when it is. Seriously.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2014 at 7:55 pm

Yes lets all take it to the Central Valley, build another San Jose and Silicon Valley, more strip malls, thousands and thousands of single story homes, garden apartments, strip malls. Miles upon miles of office parks, office buildings, shopping malls and loads of freeways lanes.

Most likely the people living here will find themselves with a commute, waiting in traffic.

Entire communities gobbled up for post war 50's ideal dream of no traffic, nice long wide streets and front door parking at all the major stores.

Only problem with that suburban lifestyle, smog, more eater demand in a hot climate, more power for all those air conditioners.

Major problem to note about this. No Farms, No Food


Posted by hmm, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 22, 2014 at 11:46 pm

I agree with the moratorium until we get this awful pressure to try to build housing for each job that gets added to mtn view. The residents are watching their city get paved over and turned into an awful place to live by allowing all of these zoning variances (sure! Have another 65 apartments!) And, what do they get in return? They get kicked in the teeth by having ABAG tell us that we must build lots more housing.

Sorry, but this is screwed up. Why are we trying to create a very high density urban center in mtn view? If high density is so much better for the environment, why not create these centers in places that are ALREADY high density? You know why not? Because people don't want to live and work in them. The end result is that everything gets paved over and we end up having people commute long distances anyway. (People don't move with their jobs, but they change jobs quite frequently!!! Every time they sell and buy a house, they are reassessed at a higher rate! Plus, their kids have to move schools, they have to make new neighbor friends, etc..)

We should be REWARDED for allowing google to build up here, not punished.

Time for a new council!


Posted by Mike Laursen, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 23, 2014 at 7:49 am

Can major sporting vents and movies be shown in a public square without paying licensing fees?


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2014 at 8:17 am

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Livermore and Tracy have limit lines concerning growth, and to preserve open space. Livermore is home to another wine region. Tracy has growth restrictions to prevent sprawl into farms, Stockton is home to a lot of agricultural related businesses. Go south of Tracy you will find farms, orchards and dairy operations, chances are Milk Pail market gets some of their products from the region. Safeway has big warehouses, distribution center.are housed in the valley.

Lots of trucking firms, land is cheap, housing is cheap, lots of other uses that will not go side by side in a suburban environment.


Posted by village.sanantonio, a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2014 at 9:40 am


This post from an observer that has been watching the
tragic growth of gridlock on San Antonio Road..

(1)
FOCUS ON 101..
Let us use some common sense and build along 101 --
Everytime I drive from San Jose to San Francisco, I have
seen plenty of room to build 100's of multi story buildings.
Go build along 101 and nobody will stop you.

Build offices along 101 and build all the shopping, apartments,
movie theaters also along 101! Mountain View has plenty of real
estate along 101 to build / develop there.

(2)
FREEWAY ACCESS IS LACKING...
Mountain View is ruining the neighborhoods by allowing
development of offices, hotel and movie theater in
San Antonio phase-2 which lacks immediate freeway access.

What next? Build on residential roads and blame ABAG
for everything?

(3)
INSTEAD...
San Antonio phase-2 will be great with many restaurants,
more outdoor sitting areas, condo units, etc. Just not
the right place for office buildings, movie theater
and a hotel.
Let phase-2 to be the mecca of restaurants...
Let phase-2 be unique in architecture...
Let phase-2 be the pride of Mountain View...


Posted by Garrett83, a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2014 at 10:20 am

Garrett83 is a registered user.

Some places along 101 aren't suitable for residential development and certain places that have housing planned are being fought. Saltworks, Pete's Harbour or near airports. Port of Redwood City id a industrial atea for water related uses, other cities do have residential area that were planned in the 60's and 70's.

101 is just bad during rush hour, getting on or off is bad, like the idea but you will need to build new transportation infrastructure. Bayfront Expressway, Southern Crossing and the.Willow Expressway


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