The Hawthorne Park development is not a solution to our city's growing pains. A quick look at the MLS shows that there are currently 66 units available in our city within the proposed development's $800,000 to $1.3 million potential price range. Some of these houses have been on the market for months. This is hardly affordable housing, and these units could never be bought by the school teachers, police officers, administrative support staff, and many other folks that currently drive two to three hours to work in our town.
In the meantime, the city's parks department recently bought some truly affordable housing, a small set of rental cottages at the intersection of Pettis and Dana. And what are they going to do with it? Put in a public park. So now we're destroying affordable housing for parks and putting in more high-end housing where a park could sit? How ironic. In no way could this be construed as "smart growth." It's quite the opposite.
Project should include gardening space
It is true as you state in your editorial on the Hawthorne Park project that "the neighborhood ... is starved for parks" ("A new shade of green," Nov. 23). But only if by "neighborhood" you mean the entire residential area of Mountain View between Central Expressway and Highway 101. That entire area has, I believe, only half the park acreage per resident of the rest of Mountain View.
The proposed project is close to Whisman Park, the largest park in the area, and would be connected to it via a short stroll through the nicely landscaped aqueduct right-of-way between Tyrella and Easy streets.
The immediate and larger neighborhood is short of yard space, however, because of greater housing density, and would benefit from more community gardens. The segment of the project's land parcel that has been designated as park space should instead become a community garden for the benefit of the residents and others nearby who lack land to grow vegetables and flowers.
There would be many environmental benefits if all new residential developments included gardening space, and Mountain View would then truly turn "a new shade of green."
Hospital salaries are undeserved
I read with great interest the opinion piece by Bill Krepick on executive salary increases at El Camino Hospital ("Hospital overpaying its top executives," Nov. 9).
Many physicians feel, also, that these are outrageous increases. Many of us, after four years of medical school, one year of internship, and three years of residency (in my case, internal medicine residency), plus two years of military service (one year in Vietnam as a field doctor), are making at best half the salary of the finance/accounting person at El Camino Hospital.
We endure long hours, deal with horrendous reimbursements from insurance companies, have to hire and fire personnel in our offices, deal with numerous phone calls day and night — and these people make those salaries? Ridiculous. Right on Mr. Krepick.
Lawrence Epstein, M.D.
'CEO worship' led to high salaries
I applaud Bill Krepick's intelligent persistence in evaluating El Camino Hospital executive salaries that have been raised to astronomical levels. Oh sure, they've looked at other hospital salaries which are also astronomical and concluded, "Our executives also deserve to be paid at astronomical levels." The truth is, these CEOs are good, they're just not that good.
We didn't get to this ridiculous situation of CEO pay by only a few excessive payouts. It is the result of several years of CEO worship that has one board and then another participating in bidding wars for so-called "top talent" — talent that stays around a few years until the brass ring appears somewhere else.
Magazines also participate in the glory-fest with rabid attention and fawning articles, because they know readers buy into the worship rituals too. We too dream of wallowing in wealth that can't be spent in a lifetime. Like the immigration mess, the cause is multi-rooted, and it takes the honed hatchets of insiders like Krepick to lay it bare — one root at a time.