http://mv-voice.com/print/story/print/2013/03/01/190-apartments-proposed-for-moffett-blvd


Mountain View Voice

News - March 1, 2013

190 apartments proposed for Moffett Blvd.

Central Expressway on-ramp could be closed under Prometheus proposal

by Daniel DeBolt

A four-story apartment project could soon replace the County Social Services building at 100 Moffett Boulevard, and close Stierlin Road's entrance onto Central Expressway.

On Wednesday, March 6, the Environmental Planning Commission is set to discuss the 190-unit apartment project proposed by Prometheus Real Estate Group. Replacing the county building and two auto shops on Stierlin Road, it will have four stories fronting Central Expressway and Moffett Boulevard, sloping to three- and then two-story elevations near its residential neighbors. Prometheus proposes one- and two-bedroom units with outdoor patios and stoops, similar to its Madera project on Evelyn Avenue.

The proposal includes the option of turning the end of Stierlin Road — which runs through the center of the project — into a public "paseo" for bicyclists and pedestrians, making cars off-limits. But the end of the road also happens to have an entrance onto Central Expressway. Some neighbors said they don't want it closed for fear that it would put more cars into the rush-hour back up on Moffett waiting to cross the Caltrain tracks and the expressway.

"It's kind of a no-brainer to leave it," said neighbor Peter Spitzer of the street portion of Stierlin Road that could be closed.

"Anybody who has ever tried to get to downtown at peak traffic hours would know what I'm talking about," he said. "You often have to wait for 15 minutes to wait for the lights to cycle around twice. It's a pretty safe guess trains will be running more frequently, too, in the future so it's only going to get worse. That on-ramp will become even more important."

Another option leaves the road in place but with improvements for bicyclists and pedestrians.

City planner Rebecca Shapiro said the Prometheus could also pay to have the free right turn lane removed from Moffett onto Central to make the intersection more pedestrian friendly. "Pedestrians would be crossing at a location that's controlled fully by the vehicle stoplight at that intersection," she said.

A new publicly accessible path would also run east-west through the project, from Moffett Boulevard to Washington Alley.

The planning commission meets at 7 p.m. on March 6 in the City Council chambers.

A website for the project has been set up at 100moffett.com.

Email Daniel DeBolt at ddebolt@mv-voice.com

Comments

Posted by George Markle, a resident of another community
on Mar 1, 2013 at 11:41 am

Mr. Spitzer is right. Closing the Stierlin on-ramp to Central Expressway will rechannel more traffic onto already-congested Moffett Blvd. I hope those concerned about this will attend the March 6th hearing at 7 pm on the 2nd floor of City Hall.


Posted by GeoOT, a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 3, 2013 at 4:47 pm

I believe that closing the Stierlin Road on-ramp will push more traffic to the Shoreline on-ramp instead of putting it onto Moffett


Posted by Peter Spitzer, a resident of Willowgate
on Mar 5, 2013 at 2:42 pm

Closing the ramp would probably push more traffic onto both Moffett and onto the Stierlin/Shoreline route. Leaving the ramp would allow one more outlet, not just for the present traffic, but also for the new traffic that the development would generate. Closing it would enhance Prometheus' project, for no public benefit, and some public detriment, as I see it. There are some other issues with this project - particularly that it provides inadequate parking, which would further congest neighborhood street parking. The density itself is the biggest issue. If enough residents attend the EPC meeting and speak up, it may be possible to moderate some of the worst aspects of this proposal, including its density.