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Mountain View begins installing signs banning RV parking despite legal challenge

Original post made on Aug 31, 2021

This month, Mountain View began installing the first of what will soon be a common sight throughout the city: large red-and-white signs banning oversized vehicles from parking on public streets.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, August 31, 2021, 1:51 PM

Comments (24)

Posted by LauraR
a resident of another community
on Aug 31, 2021 at 2:23 pm

LauraR is a registered user.

Thank you to the City of Mountain View for the way you are dealing with all the RVs on our streets. It is fair to all involved.


Posted by Seth Neumann
a resident of Waverly Park
on Aug 31, 2021 at 4:31 pm

Seth Neumann is a registered user.

this combination of broad notice and enforcement combined with safe parking and other services is fair and humane. It's time for our neighboring cities to step up and offer similar spaces and services!


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Aug 31, 2021 at 5:14 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

Seth, Laura, how many of your neighbors living in vehicles have you talked to about this? What is their opinion on how the city is handling this? Presumably, their perspective on whether this is "fair" or "humane" is important.

With far fewer safe parking spots than vehicles, how can anyone claim this is "humane" or "fair"?


Posted by Polomom
a resident of Waverly Park
on Sep 1, 2021 at 10:44 am

Polomom is a registered user.

@Randy. We will never have enough spots since RVs move into MV from other communities. The only way we can help is getting these folks out of the vehicles into social services and hopefully into permanent jobs/housing. We have had status quo for too long. RVs are not meant for street living, they need hook ups. And by the way the Aloha RV park in Sunnyvale has openings….


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Sep 1, 2021 at 12:00 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

Polomom, were your claim that "we will never have enough spots" true, we wouldn't see the fact that the majority of vehicle dwellers are former Mountain View residents. That fact comes from the City itself.

I'll cheekily remind you, though, that the City claims none of this is about the quality of vehicles as housing, it's only about traffic safety. Weird how the proponents keep forgetting that...


Posted by Polomom
a resident of Waverly Park
on Sep 1, 2021 at 12:11 pm

Polomom is a registered user.

@Randy, I want to see the numbers. I believe the numbers admitted into our little village on Leghorn and into the Safe Parking lots. But the numbers of RV's still on Continental and Crissanto and all over other streets point to out of towners. There were no openings created on those streets after the eligible ones went to city lots! We shouldn't subsidize the RV landlord source of income!


Posted by Concerned long time MVer
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 1, 2021 at 2:35 pm

Concerned long time MVer is a registered user.

Thank you MV for doing the right thing. Siegal opened the door to the vehicles dwellers, and invited many more RVs into MV - MOST OF WHICH are NOT displaced MVers, but from other parts of CA. Why do our streets need to be filled with RVs?
Siegel you were voted out for a reason - we don't want your damaging politics in MV - get it?!



Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Sep 1, 2021 at 2:38 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

Concerned, that's simply false. I must report your comment to the moderators for spreading misinformation. The city has stated repeatedly that the majority of vehicle dwellers lived or worked in Mountain View.


Posted by MV neighbor
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 1, 2021 at 2:59 pm

MV neighbor is a registered user.

Randy, would you provide a cite to the statement that you made re whether majority of RV dwellers were MV residents. The last survey I saw, which was several years back, was that a majority had not previously lived in MV and were single males. The population may well have changed over the years because this was done perhaps five years ago, around the time a lot of construction workers were living in RVs on weekdays and generally gone from places like Shoreline on weekends.

Please, I am not trying to pick a fight with you, would just like to know if there is a more recent survey you are referring to...


Posted by Peter
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Sep 1, 2021 at 3:27 pm

Peter is a registered user.

Kudos to Randy Guelph for offering to house an RV in his driveway. I must say, I have much more respect for his comments. I also think that those others who feel that the City is not doing enough should also offer up their driveway. Much Respect!


Posted by MV neighbor
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 1, 2021 at 3:28 pm

MV neighbor is a registered user.

Randy, per my question above, I did find the 2016 survey of RV dwellers in MV. It does show that 59% said they were from MV and 41% were not. 72% were male (that was a fact that stuck out in my mind at the time because it seemed unusually high). Not sure whether a more recent survey exists.


Posted by JustAWorkingStiff
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Sep 1, 2021 at 3:30 pm

JustAWorkingStiff is a registered user.

City of Mountain View is doing a good job here.
Safe Parking provides:
Sewage/Garbage/Water Services and a safe area to park
Social Services too; to get them the help they need
MV is offering more services and help then other cities around here

In contrast, Lenny Siegel and his team are suing City of MV despite the resources
MV is devoting to RVs. This story doesn't make a lot of sense.
* Not suing cities around here which don't allow RVs
* MV voted for the ordinance fair and square, yet Lenny and his team is suing
* Lenny opposed putting this to a city-wide vote. I wonder why? Because if there
is a disagreement between various groups in the city, why is it so bad to
let everybody vote and resolve it? The vote occurred, and now Lenny and his team
are suing because he/they didn't like the outcome.
* How does it make sense to let an unlimited number of RVs from anywhere set up
living quarters anywhere in the city without sewage/garbage/water support?
* How does it make sense that a small group of Activists demand that RVs impact
a specific group of MV residents without their input? It does not make sense.
Nor is it fair.

I hope in the future that nobody votes for Lenny Siegel or any of his supporting team. Thank you




Posted by MV neighbor
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 1, 2021 at 3:37 pm

MV neighbor is a registered user.

I meant to add that the 2016 survey also said that only 43% responded that their last permanent housing was in Mountain View. Not sure any of this is directly applicable to the underlying debate, but when someone says a majority of rv residents are either from MV or not from MV, it seems like the data is mixed. However, RV dwellers with ties, former residents or work, do get priority for spaces in safe parking lots..


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Sep 1, 2021 at 3:51 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

MV Neighbor, I believe we're considering the same survey. I'm not sure what's mixed about a majority being from Mountain View (59%). Housing instability often happens in waves, so "last permanent" is usually a cascade of moves that leads to them in a vehicle in their hometown.

As I pointed out above, the number of vehicles is much higher than the number of total safe parking spots, so priority doesn't really matter.


Posted by Tim
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Sep 1, 2021 at 4:14 pm

Tim is a registered user.

Like many residents, I’ve voiced my opinion on the RV ban. If you’re unhappy with the RV ban (as I am), take it to the polls. There are council representatives in Mountain View who should move on — that is, find another way to serve the community. Frankly, I’m tired of same folks running for office. Perhaps Mountain View would benefit from some fresh faces. Food for thought…


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Sep 1, 2021 at 4:23 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

Tim, I don't think it's acceptable for us as a society to target people based solely on misstated claims about some shared characteristic they have with others, even if a majority voted for it to happen. Do you? There are some dangerous historic precedents down that path.


Posted by Concerned long time MVer
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 1, 2021 at 6:23 pm

Concerned long time MVer is a registered user.

[Post removed due to personal attack]


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Sep 1, 2021 at 6:43 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

Concerned, I think most would agree that it's unreasonable to require that someone post their home address on a public website in order to participate in a discussion. Not that I think it is required to participate, but I do give the vehicle dwellers my personal help, almost daily.

As adults, we can discuss issues on the merits, but I view people living in their vehicles as a symptom of the underlying issue, not the problem itself that needs to be treated. Focusing on rousting these people from their homes (sorry, for traffic safety purposes), makes the lives of the less fortunate worse for the pleasure of those better off. That's not a trade I can morally defend.

Do you feel at all bad for posting misinformation about the people living in vehicles? Who gave you that bad information, and what else did they lie to you about?


Posted by Old Steve
a resident of Rex Manor
on Sep 2, 2021 at 8:53 am

Old Steve is a registered user.

I am with Randy. I tried to get my street taken out of the signing program. We already have a 72 hr street parking ordinance. We could have spent the $1 million the signs are costing on more rigorous (not necessarily better) enforcement of 72 hrs if this was really about traffic safety. Many people who keep our community running have lost the ability to afford nearby housing. When the earthquake comes (and it will), we'll see how we do with many of our Police, Fire, and Public Works off duty folks not available to report due to road closures. Affordable housing is the real issue, not what legal vehicles can be allowed to park where. Derelict vehicles can already be removed through existing enforcement opportunities. During pandemic we have all been safer for folks who have lost housing living in vehicles rather than tents on our streets. Compassion anyone??


Posted by Parks
a resident of Rengstorff Park
on Sep 2, 2021 at 4:15 pm

Parks is a registered user.

I still honestly don't understand how people think that allowing people to live on the street is the compassionate choice. It lets government off the hook about providing real solutions and creates legitimate safety and sanitation issues. How is it progressive to give the OK to allowing people, including children, to live without reliable heat, running water and sanitation? RV's don't belong on the street AND government needs to do much much more to help with humane affordable housing.


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Sep 2, 2021 at 4:43 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

Parks, your framing of the choice is inaccurate.

All of these enforcement actions are doing exactly what you are accusing others of doing: letting the city off the hook. Remember that the city drafted Measure C as their solution (that is, to the problem of traffic safety!), and they chose to roust these people. By endorsing that approach, the voters let the city off the hook to solve the underlying problem. Voters could have rejected it and instead demanded that the city take an affirmative responsibility to finding stable living situations for these people, but they didn't. Voters chose to make their lives worse.

It's not compassion to kick these people out of their homes, fine them, and seize their property because you think it's not good enough. It's compassion to provide them something better, and that's what the city and voters should have done.


Posted by Polomom
a resident of Waverly Park
on Sep 2, 2021 at 5:25 pm

Polomom is a registered user.

Can The Voice maybe report on the success stories regarding our RVs-in MV . Our Leghorn village for houseless persons is at 95% and of those 48 came from the RV population, 38 from cars and the rest was living on the streets. This information is from MV CC. That means about 80 vehicles were removed and their occupants found dignified housing. According to the MV city website Livemoves expects to serve about 300 individuals a year. There won’t soon be any vehicle dwellers left. Unfortunately that won’t come true, not because our city is not working hard enough and spending a lot of $ on this issue, but like with any homeless encampment a small percentage will never want to integrate into our community. For those we have plenty street parking available. The current lawsuit is picking on the wrong city. Wasting $ that could be used for the Crestview housing.


Posted by Steven Nelson
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Sep 6, 2021 at 9:16 am

Steven Nelson is a registered user.

@Randy - thanks for your cheekiness! @Old Steve, thanks for trying!
The 72 hour move is a reasonable state-wide vehicle law. Since the owners - not occupants, would be responsible for tickets, it really would be useful to have this law enforced (with tickets) to start to price-out uncooperative 'RV landloards'.
For all the political backslapping on the (good) Leghorn project - it was not on-time, was it? There is public land avaliable for more of these (or tiny-house, or modular-built small stacked units) at COOPER SCHOOL (MVWSD) and CUESTA PARK ANNEX (CIty of MV). As they say in Los Altos SD politics, NEC (North of El Camino) does not have to host all the low-income housing needs {right fellow rich people in South of El Camino}. It is only political will. It is only moral character. The poor will always be with us. They needn't live in street RVs.
Peace and Love


Posted by Steven Nelson
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Sep 6, 2021 at 9:24 am

Steven Nelson is a registered user.

I was recently talking to my wife about THOSE WONDERFUL square holely 'sign posts' that the city sometimes puts up. Great for adding new signs (just bolt on new as needed). [see the third detail picture in the article]

AND I JUST THOUGHT, probably also great for Unbolting morally questionable 'signs'. Not that I would organize an "unbolting party" myself U C. But ....


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