Council supports three-story condos at 333 North Rengstorff

The City Council gave thumbs up to a high-density condo project last week after a developer spent years improving on a previously rejected proposal for condos on the Rengstorff Avenue site.

"Of all the plans we've seen this has been most compatible" with the neighborhood, said Council member Laura Macias, who has usually been one of the council's biggest opponents of high-density housing.

Macias and the rest of the council made supportive comments about the project during the May 11 study session for three-story condos at 333 North Rengstorff Avenue. The only real concern expressed by the council was the loss of dozens of trees at the site because of its underground parking garage. Two large redwoods would be saved.

Macias made her comment after several neighbors spoke against the project, saying that adding more residents, even with more than two parking spaces per unit, would add to the street's already significant parking problems. They also said the buildings would be massive compared to neighboring apartments. But the project's architect spoke passionately about the project, saying that neighbors would be able look over their fences and see landscaping instead of apartment building walls like they do now. Reducing the density of it would make the project financially unfeasible, he said.

If approved, the 1.7 acre site would eventually have two new three-story condo buildings and a total of 64 units, most of which would be one-bedroom or "entry level" for-sale housing. The site is now home to a 32-unit, two-story apartment complex, which city staff said would be likely to fall in an earthquake because of its soft-story design.

Several years ago the council rejected a higher density proposal for condos at the site that would have created a large building with units accessed through internal hallways.


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Posted by John the Man
a resident of Old Mountain View
on May 19, 2010 at 2:22 pm

Do it. Do it.

Like this comment
Posted by Where?
a resident of Castro City
on May 19, 2010 at 2:26 pm

Does anyone know if the project is on North or South Rengstorff.

Like this comment
Posted by Marc
a resident of Blossom Valley
on May 19, 2010 at 2:56 pm

North Rengstorff

Like this comment
Posted by Martin Omander
a resident of Rex Manor
on May 19, 2010 at 3:01 pm

I'm guessing it's 333 *North* Rengstorff. The Community Development Department Summary in the city's budget for 08/09 mentions:

Process a rezoning and development project for a proposed 64 unit project at 333 North Rengstorff Avenue.

(Link to budget: Web Link)

Like this comment
Posted by Bruce Karney
a resident of Old Mountain View
on May 19, 2010 at 6:43 pm

Is a 34 units/acre development really "high density"? Compared to projects recently built and approved in Mountain View, "high density" doesn't seem like an accurate description to me.

(Yes, it is twice as dense as what's there now, but does THAT what defines high density, or is the absolute number of dwelling units per acre?)

In any event, I'm pleased with the Council's decision.

Like this comment
Posted by Rodger
a resident of Sylvan Park
on May 20, 2010 at 12:02 pm

We need to stop adding to the density of Mountain View. When will it end?

Like this comment
Posted by snawet
a resident of Shoreline West
on May 20, 2010 at 7:20 pm

Good. I'm buying a house but it's in San jose. All the houses in MV are expensive and they are these post-war wrecks that need to be torn down. Ditto for all of the other "condos" that are just old rotting apartment conversions from the 50s.

Like this comment
Posted by Mike R
a resident of Old Mountain View
on May 21, 2010 at 5:26 pm

Didn't Prometheus say that anything less than 61 units/acre would not be financially feasible? But here it is 34 units/acre? It seems that developers are quick to say that "Anything less than <insert number here> is not financially feasible".

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