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Proposed office project in Mountain View's San Antonio center met with criticism

Original post made on Dec 4, 2020

A proposed seven-story office building on the site of the former Milk Pail Market in Mountain View could soon cap off a yearslong efforts to redevelop the San Antonio shopping center. But it's hard to find any fans of the finale.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, December 4, 2020, 1:50 PM

Comments (5)

Posted by reader
a resident of Waverly Park
on Dec 4, 2020 at 4:05 pm

reader is a registered user.

When a council member says "...but I will be honest and say..." I can't help but wonder, if they are being honest this time, what is the standard of honesty for all other utterances?

Perhaps I missed it, but is TDR defined for the reader in this article?

It seems most of what I read about new developments in MV follows a pattern. The out-of-town developers (who do not live in MV) have a vision for what MV should look like (or maybe that vision is to just maximize their profit), submits a plan that breaks numerous rules and requests numerous exemptions, council replies "well it's not exactly what we had in mind" but "reluctantly allows the project to proceed." vowing to not repeat mistakes made the last time they reluctantly allowed a project to proceed.

Council was expecting housing and the plan submitted is for offices?! Does said council member enter a salon, ask for a cut, and come out with a new color instead?

At least council got it right when they acknowledged that "mistakes were made" with Phase I. That's the understatement of the century! What could be more inviting than having to criss-cross a parking lot and dodge moving cars to access stores and restaurants, or walk down a long narrow alley to get from Safeway to Trader Joe's?

I'm seeing very little evidence that council or staff know much about design of communities. May I suggest they read Christoper Alexander's "A Pattern Language" and learn about the characteristics of inviting, comfortable living spaces.

Or they could just continue to let out-of-town developers decide what our town looks like.

Posted by smorr
a resident of Monta Loma
on Dec 4, 2020 at 9:28 pm

smorr is a registered user.

San Antonio Center has become a very uninviting place. If Trader Joe's weren't there, I'd probably never go there. And WHY would Council even consider putting in more office space? Because of COVID, many employers have discovered that working from home is a great option and are either offering or requiring some workers to do that even after the pandemic is over. So we'll probably need far less office space than pre-pandemic and we'll have a bunch of empty useless buildings if we keep adding to the stock. Meantime, we're in great need of housing! C'mon Council. Do what's right and get Mtn View what we need - a beautiful, inviting mixed use center that we can be proud of instead of more boxy, crowded together buildings!

Posted by Mark
a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 4, 2020 at 11:50 pm

Mark is a registered user.

I do not understand why people seem to think that the corner location on such a busy intersection would be a good site for residential units. I would never live there, you could never open any widow, noise/smell from the street, kids could never go outside and play unsupervised. No Thank You.

The best use would be an office building. But the design of the proposal is one ugly building. Maybe a different architect is needed.

I am hearing that companies like Google and other tech companies are anxious to get workers back into the offices. They are less productive at home and most workers miss the social interactions with their co-workers.

Posted by Tal Shaya
a resident of another community
on Dec 5, 2020 at 10:17 pm

Tal Shaya is a registered user.

Would make it difficult to get onto San Antonio from California Street during commute hours. It already takes 20 minutes to drive the two miles from there to the freeway because of heavy traffic. But no doubt this is coming, along with all four corners of the intersection.

Posted by Jeremy Hoffman
a resident of Rengstorff Park
on Dec 6, 2020 at 7:47 am

Jeremy Hoffman is a registered user.

I haven't agreed with all of Councilmember Matichak's positions in the past, so I want to voice my strong agreement with both of her quotes in this article, about the jobs-housing balance and the need to not repeat the mistakes of Phase 1 -- the design that is so hostile to foot traffic.

I don't know if this is a relevant comparison, but I think a corner that looks quite nice and inviting is the north of the busy intersection of Central and Moffett, with the diagonal bike/ped path cutting through the two apartment buildings and connecting to Stierlin.

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