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A vision emerges for the city's future

Original post made on Jul 27, 2010

The residents who filled the City Council chambers Saturday morning for the most part did not oppose plans for taller buildings, better transit and a more "walkable" city as part of a broad vision for Mountain View's next 20 years.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, July 26, 2010, 2:04 PM

Comments (17)

Posted by Konrad M. Sosnow, a resident of another community
on Jul 27, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Building mixed use of four or five stories along El Camino would certainly add to our current traffic snarls. I wonder if Chris Banen, president of MIG, the consultant group hired by the city to help draft the general plan has ever driven along El Camino in rush hour?


Posted by resident, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jul 28, 2010 at 12:44 am

@Konrad: This is not about what Chris Banen or MIG wants; it's about what the citizens of Mountain View want. And we clearly want higher density mixed use development along the El Camino Real corridor. The ideas being put forth in the General Plan update are those ideas that bubbled up from dozens and dozens of public meetings and visioning sessions. If you'd bothered to participate in the public input process, perhaps you'd realize this. But then, it's so much easier to snipe and gripe from the comfort of one's own home rather than getting up, getting out of the house, and participating in the governance of your city.


Posted by Konrad M. Sosnow, a resident of another community
on Jul 29, 2010 at 3:04 pm

I have participated in all but one public meeting. I was out of town on the date of that meeting. I will be at the meeting this evening. I recollect that in the neighborhood meeting about a year ago my neighbors liked the idea redeveloping El Camino Real bur wanted the height limited to 3 stories. I know that some people want as much development as possible as long as it is not in their (old Mountain View) neighborhood.


Posted by Konrad M. Sosnow, a resident of another community
on Jul 29, 2010 at 3:14 pm

One last comment. I am proud of my comments so I sign my name. It is easy to insult me anonymously.


Posted by jupiterk, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jul 29, 2010 at 3:32 pm

I don't usually pray but I am hoping we get hit with a 10 earthquake before we change this town into another ugly work of the greedy , rotten city council.


Posted by SP Phil, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2010 at 7:17 pm

I was at the Saturday morning session. The plan proposal did not call for a "wall" of four- and five-story buildings along El Camino. The sketches showed larger buildings at key intersections, thus located at what could be public transportation connectors (bus stops, shuttles connecting ECR and downtown or ECR and North Shoreline, etc.). In between would be lower-height buildings and even open areas. The aim would be to have aesthetically appealing vistas and and enable the use of public transit to make it possible for people to rely on cars.

I thought a most interesting area on Saturday was integrating the transportation plan with the general plan. Hopefully automobile traffic won't be the only way to navigate ECR in the future.


Posted by SP Phil, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2010 at 7:24 pm

Jupiterk really gets around. His/her postings give the neighborhood as Cuesta Park, Waverly Park, Gemello, St. Francis Acres, and Martens-Carmelita.


Posted by tommygee, a resident of Rex Manor
on Jul 29, 2010 at 10:02 pm

So we may lose the Century 16 theaters? If we do lose the theaters, would Mtn. View find another home for its residents, and others to watch movies.
We do not have the MTN. View theater anymore. Also we lost the Old Mill 6 theaters in '93. So if we lose the Century 16 theaters where would are citizens go; to the AMC Mercado in Santa Clara? To the AMC in Cupertino at Vallco? From my house I can walk the short distance to the theaters on Shoreline.


Posted by Concerned Homeowner, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2010 at 11:21 pm

Replacing the Century 16 theaters for a potential hotel at the corner of Highway 101 would be a BIG MISTAKE. As a homeowner in Mountain View I hope that we will be given the opportunity to vote on this issue. I don't like the idea of having to drive to the
AMC Mercado in Santa Clara or the AMC in Cupertino at Vallco to see a movie when we already have the Century 16 theaters in our own backyard with ample parking space. Have you ever tried to find parking at the AMC Mercado theatre parking lot as well as the AMC parking lot in Cupertino when a popular movie is showing? It is a total nightmare when you can't find parking. At least in Mountain View we don't have a parking lot problem at our Century 16 theatres. One of the main reasons why I chose to buy my home in Mountain View is because everything is centrally located including our theatres.
Bottom line, find another lot to build a hotel.



Posted by Jarrett, a resident of Castro City
on Jul 29, 2010 at 11:31 pm

@Tommygee, Concerned Homeowner

I went to both of these meetings and I recall that these sketches were very hypothetical and none of the specific uses (like the hotel) were set in stone. I think they were created to give us a broad visualization of what the area might look like.

If we and council decide to proceed with a revamp of North Bayshore with potentially housing, commercial, and office the city would likely create a specific plan for the area that would get into the nitty gritty details of what type of uses to encourage and discourage at specific locations. This is where we could say "hey, let's make the theater nicer, maybe with a new building like what's pictured, but it shouldn't go away!"


Posted by Mr Advice, a resident of Blossom Valley
on Jul 30, 2010 at 6:42 am

How about a nice gambling casino / whore house, we need more adult entertainment in MV.


Posted by allan, a resident of The Crossings
on Jul 30, 2010 at 11:52 am

Funny how improved access to Caltrain goes straight through the new Crossings development. Anyone bother to check how narrow that street is when it was originally designed? Don't the homeowners own that property? Ridiculous.


Posted by Jarrett, a resident of Castro City
on Jul 30, 2010 at 1:27 pm

Allan,

I'm pretty sure Fayette drive is a public street. With that said, the new street connecting the shopping center to caltrain through the crossings would likely be narrower and not a main thoroughfare for cars. It would be a more pedestrian oriented street. Drivers can use Showers for auto access to the area.


Posted by Allan, a resident of The Crossings
on Jul 30, 2010 at 4:55 pm

Jarret,

Not Fayette drive. That's not in the Crossings. It the road perpendicular to the train line, and it cuts right through the Crossings. In fact it's only about 10 years old and their is basically no room for improving it unless you tear down the new buildings. Showers drive provides the best access as it already does. This is just some pipe dream by the council about how we all fit in to their little plans.


Posted by Jarrett, a resident of Castro City
on Jul 30, 2010 at 11:12 pm

Allan,

My mistake. I meant to say Pacchetti way. I'm almost positive it's a public street. However, the internal street network of the crossings is definitely private.

I don't think Pacchetti has to be "improved" by widening. Showers and San Antonio provide more than enough auto access to the Caltrain station/ SA Center and Pacchetti way could play the role of a more pedestrian oriented street. However, instead of the leafy street ending at California street, the pleasant sidewalks and narrow drive would continue into what is now San Antonio Center and buildings would gradually get bigger and front the sidewalks. Basically, for those that choose to walk or bike, they get direct access to the spine of SA center and the Caltrain Station via this link. For those that choose to drive, they can use Showers and San Antonio to enter the Center and access Caltrain. Everyone wins!

As for the plausibility of this plan, The Crossings is actually a catalyst for more connected development throughout this part of town! The Crossings was specifically designed to be a piece of a more pedestrian friendly environment for the San Antonio area. Now that some of the shopping center owners wish to redevelop, the city wants to take some of the ideas and momentum from the plan of your neighborhood and apply it to the mass of tangled links that presently make up San Antonio Center.

Again, I think everyone wins with the broad ideas being presented here. We (I live nearby too!) get a retail destination that is more organized and connected to the surrounding neighborhoods.


Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Jul 31, 2010 at 5:39 pm

Ok here is my 2 cents. First these are ideas not plans yet, El Camino has some large lots and lots of small lots so a 5 story building will not work, the plan to allow greater height is good for this major street ofstrip Malls. S.A. Center I think again both walking routes and streets are part of the plan, the moives theaters can find a nice home it will start jump the center. Hotel by freeway next to major street and job center need I say more.


Posted by Political Insider, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Aug 2, 2010 at 12:08 am

Ideas that will never become reality. Current rules no matter how specified will never lead to higher density on small lots along ECR.


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