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An Integrated Increased Housing Plan

Original post made by Konrad M. Sosnow, Cuesta Park, on Aug 28, 2014

Mountain View General Plan 2030 identifies five (5) change areas for new housing and one potential additional area. Traditionally, each area has been looked at independently as time came to develop a precise plan for the area. It is time to look at the whole instead of each part separately in order to assess trade-offs and alternatives in order to select the best set of alternatives.

San Antonio Phase I includes housing and Phase II will include more housing thanks to the effort of Lenny Siegel and Balance Mountain View. Now we need a transportation link from San Antonio to North Bayshore at the Western end, near Intuit.

East Whisman, as Lisa Matichak has pointed out has public transportation - Light Rail, and car access from 237, Middlefield Road, 101, and Central expressway. Also, East Whisman does not have the environmental concerns that North Bayshore does. For these reasons East Whisman is a better location than North Bayshore.Let's replace the aging tilt up R&D buildings in East Whisman with modern housing!

North Bayshore has environmental concerns and it is cut off from the main part of Mountain View by highway 101, with only a few crossovers. Developers build in phases as they don’t want to flood the market and thus drive down prices. I would expect that it if City Council voted toy to build in North Bayshore a few hindered units would be built per each year. Thus, it will take several years until the 5,000 units required for a viable community are built.

El Camino Real (ECR) is state highway (CA 82) which is gridlocked for much of the day and evening. Yes, mixed use housing will allow shopkeepers and their employees to walk to work. However, I see luxury apartments (think of Madera) being constructed. They will only be affordable to hi-tech employees who work in North Bayshore, Menlo Park, Sunnyvale or San Jose. Why build high density housing along ECR to add to the gridlock? In addition, four (4) and five (5) story massive buildings impact negatively on the adjacent neighborhoods. There are better places to add housing.

Moffett Boulevard is another prime area for mixed use housing development. It already has public transportation with Caltrain and Light Rail. Automobile access is via Central Expressway and Moffett Boulevard.

Comments (3)

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Posted by Linda Curtis
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Aug 28, 2014 at 4:49 pm

How many of you MV citizens are aware that the data provided by our city government reveals that there will be 63% E and F intersections on and in the vicinity of El Camino Real by 2030?

This is unacceptable! If you are worried about gridlock, get busy.

If you do not want to believe this, see for yourselves the data in the chart on page 95 of the EIR (Environmental Impact Report) that was done for the ECR Precise Plan. Changing this plan will not change this, so vote wisely if you think lots and lots of extremely dense growth is the answer to lower rents (which it cannot accomplish, as supply will never be able to even come close to demand for housing in MV).

Nor will transportation solutions solve ever more and more population density, or the report from our government would have reflected this! They always tend to be overly optimistic by my standards, as I am empirically trained with an M.S. Yet see for yourselves what they have predicted.

And remember this data predicting the unacceptable 63% E and F intersections was supplied by our city government, so do what you can to slow down and limit the size of giant construction ideas or you'll be sorry when this increasingly comes to fruition.

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Posted by Moffett Resident
a resident of Willowgate
on Sep 1, 2014 at 10:02 am

Konrad, all your objections to high-density housing on ECR are equally (or more) applicable to Moffett Boulevard:

"I see luxury apartments (think of Madera) being constructed. They will only be affordable to hi-tech employees who work in North Bayshore, Menlo Park, Sunnyvale or San Jose. Why build high density housing along ECR to add to the gridlock? In addition, four (4) and five (5) story massive buildings impact negatively on the adjacent neighborhoods."

Moffett is a narrow commercial strip running through single-family neighborhoods. 4-story high-density just won't work on most of the street. If you are thinking about the first block of Moffett near the expressway opposite 100 Moffett, it is adjacent to 1-story single family. If you are thinking about the former Cottage Bar site at Central Avenue and Moffett, it is adjacent to single-family. If you are thinking about the intersection of Moffett and Middlefield, that's not part of the discussion, as it's federal government land.

Bear in mind that the further you get from the transit center, the less valid the "close to transit" argument becomes.

Prometheus has already taken the low-hanging fruit with the 100 Moffett development, which will in fact be exactly like Madera. There will be no mixed use at 100 Moffett because, as is true for the rest of Moffett, there is nowhere at all to park.

Closer to the transit center means closer to the intersection of Moffett and Central Expressway. This intersection is already highly congested at peak hours. Getting into or leaving downtown via Moffett during PM peak hours can take 10 or 15 minutes, just to get through the intersection. It will be getting worse for sure, when 100 Moffett is finished and the Stierlin on-ramp to the expressway is closed, diverting that traffic onto Moffett, and adding the new traffic from 100 Moffett.

The city will be developing a Moffett Precise Plan in the next year or two. It will be one last chance to see that sanity prevails as the street is developed. Moffett residents have been hoping for years to see the street upgraded, and recently much of the blight has been removed. We need to make sure that we don't now get stuck with a different kind of blight.

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Posted by MVResident67
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Sep 1, 2014 at 11:13 am

Link to the Draft Environmental Impact Report for the El Camino Real Precise plan. Comments on the draft EIR will be accepted until Monday, September 29th 2014. (Although, there is conflicting information about the public review dates contained in the Draft EIR. The first document in the Draft EIR says review period is from August 15th to September 29th, 2014 and in the paragraph immediately below that it says that all comments must be received by September 22nd, 2014?!?

Web Link


Link to the Draft nvironmental Impact Report for 801 El Camino Real - Greystar development proposal. Comments on this draft EIR will be accepted until Monday, September 15th 2014.

Web Link

"Project Description: The project proposes the redevelopment of the 2.38-acre site with a mixed use
project that would include three new buildings, a below-grade parking structure, a courtyard, a public
plaza, and landscaping. The existing buildings, paving, and most landscaping would be demolished to
prepare the site for redevelopment. Following demolition and site clearing, the project would construct
164 apartment units and 10,800 square feet of commercial space. The proposed residential density of the
project is approximately 69 dwelling units per acre (69 du/ac). The project proposes to rezone the site to
the P (Planned Community) district to allow the project to be approved prior to adoption of a new precise
plan for the El Camino Real corridor, and to allow the City the flexibility to implement development
standards and features which conform to the 2030 General Plan."

**Of note: Greystar is requesting that the project to be re(UP) zoned and approved, as proposed, PRIOR to the adoption of El Camino Real precise plan being complete...uh, why? (See above)

***Also of note is that this development shares property lines with single story single family R-1 zoned homes, and the draft EIR audaciously claims that there is absolutely "NO SIGNIFICANT IMPACT" for anything related to the development proposal...not one thing. It's freaking miracle, or data spun to sell a lie. Read the EIR and decide for yourselves what you believe.

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