Town Square

Post a New Topic

New survey finds hundreds of inhabited RVs parked on Mountain View's city streets

Original post made on Dec 13, 2021

A new community-driven survey found more than 200 inhabited RVs parked along public roadways in Mountain View, despite extensive efforts in recent years to curtail the number of vehicles being used as homes.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, December 13, 2021, 1:54 PM

Comments (33)

Posted by Local
a resident of Martens-Carmelita
on Dec 13, 2021 at 2:54 pm

Local is a registered user.

I am always amazed at the glaring omission of a fact in these articles: how many of the RV/street dwellers are or were actual Mountain View residents or workers? Over the years we have seen articles mentioning the large % of out of towners who come here for the taxpayer-paid services that are free to them: trash and sewage removal, cleanup, security, water, showers at safe lots, etc.
I don't think the citizens of Mountain View would resent helping our own... but when this city becomes the provider for RV/street dwellers from Los Altos, Menlo Park, Sunnyvale, etc. I think it's gone too far. Other cities have strict rules prohibiting ANY street dwelling - and just send their people to us. When will our Council deal with this? The article even lists the large amount of work MV has done to better the lives of the less fortunate, and I applaud that - but other cities must step up! If we spent our tax money on our own, we could be much more successful to get the disadvantaged housed. But when we allow more and more influx, the funds are diminished and very little is accomplished.
Now (past Council person) Lenny Siegel has encouraged a law suit. He ignores the vast inconsistency among cities that will make his lawsuit the useless and nonconstructive joke it is -and will only diminish city funds that could be better spent. Why sue Mountain View when we're the only city really doing something for the disadvantaged? In what world does that make sense?
There have been articles interviewing RV/street dwellers who clearly stated that they came here for the free services....a large number from surrounding cities and even from out of state. Some were interviewed and stated they refuse to accept help provided by Community Services Agency, as they want to live without obligations. No street dweller pays any taxes to the city that is giving so many services for free. We need to work together to move forward, or we just are stuck in this revolving nightmare.


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 13, 2021 at 3:30 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

Local, please remember, as the City continues to insist, the RV ban was not about whether vehicle dwelling should be legal. It has nothing at all to do with it. It was about traffic safety! You can look at what the proponents of Measure C, like Jac Siegel, Robert Cox, Shari W. Emling, Pam Lehner, and Albert H. Jeans said in their ballot arguments.

It's very strange that every time an article about this topic comes up, people like you start talking about other things than traffic safety. Perhaps you should reach out to those people who signed the ballot arguments and they can correct your misunderstanding.


Posted by MyOpinion
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Dec 13, 2021 at 4:20 pm

MyOpinion is a registered user.

@Randy - Should we just open up every single street in Mountain View to RV's that have no access to dump stations, freshwater or power? Housing without sewage, water, or power is ILLEGAL, so why is it OK if that housing happens to have wheels? And BTW have you ever emptied a black tank? Do you know what it is? You have been a constant ally for RV dwellers, but what IS your solution?


Posted by Johnny Yuma
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Dec 13, 2021 at 4:50 pm

Johnny Yuma is a registered user.

Every time an RV ban article is posted, the same arguments are debated back and forth to no avail. It’s reminiscent of dogs fence-fighting. Let’s wait for the lawsuit to be resolved. If the city of Mountain View loses the suit, I would like those unsightly signs to be removed (and recycled). They’re a blight on the city...


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 13, 2021 at 4:56 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

MyOpinion, the RV ban was about traffic safety, so I can't see why your questions are relevant. Just ask Jac Siegel, Robert Cox, Shari W. Emling, Pam Lehner, or Albert H. Jeans about their ballot arguments. Maybe one of them can weigh in on this comments section, if they're reading it.

I really wonder why this keeps happening!


Posted by Concerned
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 13, 2021 at 5:04 pm

Concerned is a registered user.

Mountain View is turning into San Francisco, in the worst of ways. If they build it they will come and as people move into the Safe Parking lots they are replaced on the streets by dwellers from elsewhere. We cannot solve this problem alone and MV needs to stop until other cities step up and do their bit.


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 13, 2021 at 5:11 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

Concerned, I don't think traffic safety is that bad in San Francisco. Is that what you're talking about?


Posted by LongResident
a resident of another community
on Dec 13, 2021 at 5:22 pm

LongResident is a registered user.

Misleading headline. Looks like it's very steady. It means the parking ban isn't infringing on anyone's ability to find a parking spot. It just spreads them around, which seems like a reasonable change.


Posted by MyOpinion
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Dec 13, 2021 at 7:08 pm

MyOpinion is a registered user.

@Randy, My question to you is most certainly relevant, you have been a vocal ally for people living in RV's for quite some time, so what is your solution to this issue?


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 13, 2021 at 7:29 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

MyOpinion, I don't think there was a traffic safety issue, as the city never presented any data to support that claim. As such, there's no "solution" necessary. I have to assume that's the issue you're talking about, since it's the rationale the city claimed for the RV ban.


Posted by ivg
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 13, 2021 at 9:08 pm

ivg is a registered user.

Yeah, housing without running water, indoor plumbing, etc. is illegal. The poor benighted Indians ought to be glad that we came here, ran them off their land, and showed them how to build proper houses.


Posted by Greg David
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 13, 2021 at 10:14 pm

Greg David is a registered user.

I will say right out that I don’t believe people should be allowed to live in RV’s on the streets of Mountain View, but I will also be the first to admit that I don’t know what the remedy is. As for the oversized vehicle ordnance, I voted against it, because it is an oversimplified solution to a very complex problem. I have lived on a “narrow street” for the last 33 years and all of a sudden my little Sprinter van that stands just a shade over 7ft tall is now illegal to park in front of my home. I also own a modest sized travel trailer that I like to park in front of my home when I need to do some maintenance or prepare it for a trip. Under the large vehicle ordnance, for which the signs were just posted on my block, I can’t have it here for any amount of time without risking it being towed. This despite the fact that we have NEVER had an issue with RV’s anywhere remotely near where I live. Then there is the question of what the city spent to install all these signs. And the contractor that is installing them is doing so in a extremely haphazard manner. I have seen signs place so close to driveways that if they were a vehicle they would be towed away!!!

This city is so f’ed, it’s so overdue for new representatives. And I call them representatives, because that is what they are. I don’t need a leader. I am a free man that demands representation, not a baby sitter.


Posted by Tal Shaya
a resident of Rengstorff Park
on Dec 13, 2021 at 11:41 pm

Tal Shaya is a registered user.

It's an eyesore, and a danger to public health and safety. In what world is it okay for people to camp on city streets? Who wants to look out their kitchen window and see a family of strangers living in front of the house? To allow this helps no one. RV-dwellers can work and pay rent like everyone else.


Posted by Nora S.
a resident of Rex Manor
on Dec 14, 2021 at 11:12 am

Nora S. is a registered user.

@ Tal, If you don't want to look out your window and see a family of strangers, the right thing to do is to introduce yourself! Every neighbor is a stranger until you meet them.

@ Randy, you crack me up. Carry on.






Posted by MV Resident
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Dec 14, 2021 at 2:50 pm

MV Resident is a registered user.

The bottom line is - RVs are a traffic hazard - but the primary goal of the RV ban was to get rid of RVs without appearing to be racist, bigots or uncompassionate. So that is why these other arguments come up every time we’re talking about the RV ban.
And every six months we get an article about how there’s the same number a little more or a little less but essentially the same number of RVs as there were years ago despite passing to bend them
The bottom line on this is That the people in charge seem to think they have the power and the moral superiority to decide which laws are enforced and which are not.
The only way to change this is to change the prosecutor and the people who are charged with enforcing the laws that the people pass.
If you don’t think that the people in charge should be allowed to disregard laws that protect abortion or other crimes, that you support, then you should not be in favor of people in charge choosing to disregard lies that you don’t support. It should be based on which laws are passed and they should be enforced. If enough people don’t approve of those laws, then they should work to repeal them.


Posted by JustAWorkingStiff
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 14, 2021 at 4:20 pm

JustAWorkingStiff is a registered user.

RVs and the big box trucks are a traffic hazard

I came around a corner, and a car was in my lane because they swung wide around a parked RV. I pulled rapidly into a parking space to avoid a collision.

A Box Truck parked at a corner with its big fender sticking out. You had to swing wide around it. This truck chose to park in one of the main ingress and egress area of our neighborhood.


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 14, 2021 at 6:34 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

See, people, you need to get with the program like JustAWorkingStiff. You can skim through their old posts and it's all the same stuff the RV ban supporters are posting now complaining about the vehicle dwellers being the wrong type of people, but they finally got that message discipline!

Just make up a story about other dangerous drivers that you blame on RVs. If you have no scruples, it's easy!


Posted by ivg
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 14, 2021 at 8:09 pm

ivg is a registered user.

I might be okay with prohibiting RVs from parking on narrow streets, using the city's prior threshold of 35 feet. But no, the sneaky authors of this ordinance raised the limit to 40 feet for this one purpose.


Posted by Dr. Wille
a resident of Jackson Park
on Dec 14, 2021 at 8:59 pm

Dr. Wille is a registered user.

I am guessing the survey has missed at least 5% of RVs on the streets by looking at the map provided.
Obviously we need a solution for the RV issue, because it is dangerous, especially in certain neighborhoods with limited stop signs and narrow streets already lined with cars, for people to walk/ bike. I do worry every day about hitting someone, and that is sans RVs even. MV city planners clearly did a subpar job making the city safe to peds/ cyclists.
Has anyone else noticed the moffett/castro/ central light programming is not correct for peds when a train comes through/ gets stuck at the crossing? Is that too much to ask for, that they do their jobs properly?


Posted by Rouel - Urban Living
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 16, 2021 at 9:21 am

Rouel - Urban Living is a registered user.

It seems that the same old opinions, some false and some about right, about urban living in vehicles and motorhomes keep being repeated over an over.

For one thing, one city alone cannot fix the problem. Bay Area city councils need to work together, a commission consisting of one city council member from each Bay Area, or neighboring cities, together with county and state representatives should meet regularly and work together on vehicle and motorhome living solution. The solution is the same for all cities. The concept of Safe Parking Lots, on one hand is a great idea. On the other hand the expectation that they have to transition to renting is unrealistic, when the economic conditions that caused them to be in a Safe Parking Lot, has not been reversed and likely never will be.

Cities, counties, and the state can expand the Safe Parking Lots to create a new type of neighborhood, vehicle and motorhome spaces. These new neighborhoods, don't have to be free, say 25% of full time minimum wage after taxes. All vehicles need to be maintained, and Maybe a neighborhood for seniors on social security. The counties have the necessary permits to operate them like RV Park Campgrounds. Except they are not for recreation.


Posted by Rouel - Urban Living
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 16, 2021 at 9:42 am

Rouel - Urban Living is a registered user.

I was asked to exit a Safe Parking program in Moutain View, so now back to urban living, because I would not transition to renting.
On Social Security and a small pension, to pay rent to a corporation, that pushes rents to makes more money this year than last year, and more money next year than this year, should not be the only way to go. Motorhomes are designed and built operate with or without shoreline connections. If a Safe Parking lot doesn't have shoreline connections then they should be basically free, since there are "Honey Wagons" that motorhome dwellers can call, $40 to as high as $80, for emptying black and grey tanks, and get fresh potable water. Though the fresh potable water from honey wagons can be questionably unsafe. That is my experience. About every 7 to 10 days drive to a legal motorhome tank dumping site at a nearby RV park, about $25, and also get fresh potable water.
Being living in my motorhome in Mountain View since retirement, about 15 yrs, it is also called full time RV'ing, millions of retirees do all over the country. And I do travel about 3 to 4 times a year. The new neighborhoods as described in my earlier post is the SOLUTION.
It is better to spend my $$ maintaining my motorhome, than paying rent to a corporation !! It is relatively inexpensive to make a motorhome electrically self sufficient with Solar.


Posted by JustAWorkingStiff
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 16, 2021 at 2:41 pm

JustAWorkingStiff is a registered user.

Randy, so good to hear from you.

Net/Net: Those are true traffic issues with RVs

Randy, you are so predictable
1. Anybody you disagree with you call them a liar
2. You keep repeating the that RVs are not a traffic issue; that is false

I repeat the traffic issues because they are true, and to show an alternative
to people like you, who keep repeating that they are not.


Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 16, 2021 at 3:01 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

The city had ample time to submit evidence that there was a traffic safety issue, and they failed to do so. If this is such a dangerous situation, it should have been easy to do, and the onus is on the city since it was their entire justification for the ban. They haven't even submitted any evidence to that effect in their ongoing lawsuit!

Please let us know where these totally real incidents of yours occurred.


Posted by Rouel - Urban Living
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 16, 2021 at 5:25 pm

Rouel - Urban Living is a registered user.

Are there streets too narrow to park a motorhome for urban living, certainly, it is obvious. Are there resently sign posted streets prohibiting oversize vehicles on streets with bike Lanes that are about half the width of a car lane, yep, there are. It is obvious in such cases, that safety is not an issue.

I bike between 80 mi to 120 mi a week in Mountain View, my home city, the signs prohibiting oversize vehicles are popping up every where, even on streets where there has never been a motorhome parked, and on streets where safety to bikecycle riders is not an issue.

Yet, there is a SOLUTION, We need to implement the SOLUTION that I have proposed here in my earlier posts. New neighborhoods for vehicles and motorhome spaces. The city, the counties, and the state have the properties and permits to implement the SOLUTION in every city in the Bay Area.

Here is the SOLUTION:
Cities, counties, and the state can expand the Safe Parking Lots to create a new type of neighborhood, vehicle and motorhome spaces. These new neighborhoods, don't have to be free, say 25% of full time minimum wage after taxes. All vehicles need to be maintained, and Maybe a neighborhood for seniors on social security. The counties have the necessary permits to operate them like RV Park Campgrounds. Except they are not for recreation.


Posted by Ok
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Dec 17, 2021 at 9:38 am

Ok is a registered user.

@Rouel - Urban Living
Why stop there with your “solution“?
Let’s create a new type of neighborhood with tents and cardboard boxes for people who cannot afford RV!
Oh, wait, we already have this.


Posted by TT
a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2021 at 11:57 am

TT is a registered user.

@Ok, your post suggests @Rouel's SOLUTION is the mother SOLITION. If a community has a problem with people living in tents and cardboard boxes those community leaders/representatives create homeless shelters to get them off the streets and to try to rehab them. Hence, if your community has a problem with these mostly homeless RV owners, see @Rouel's SOLUTION. ANY RV owner who parks on ANY residential street without any services, especially where it is posted "No Parking", is desperate. Implement @Rouel's SOLUTION to include enforcing the applicable laws for those RV owners who continue to park illegally and it would seem the growing number of illegally parked RV should/would decline. OR, you can do nothing and sit back and watch the number of illegally parked RV's grow and grow.

Hello, earth to Mountain View, earth to Mountain View, come in over! Homelessness ain't going nowhere and it's becoming obvious we have a lot of homeless RV owners.


Posted by Concerned
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 17, 2021 at 4:40 pm

Concerned is a registered user.

Mountain View is becoming a dumping ground for the county!


Posted by Mtn View Mom
a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 18, 2021 at 5:09 pm

Mtn View Mom is a registered user.

There are some very tall and wide construction trucks wider than 7 feet parked on my neighborhood streets. They really do reduce visibility for cyclists when you have to turn left or right around them. I especially worry for my kids who encounter these on their school routes. I’m looking forward to the City enforcing the new law on these vehicles. If the law is genuinely about traffic safety and not about blight, they will enforce!


Posted by Rouel - Urban Living
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 25, 2021 at 10:07 am

Rouel - Urban Living is a registered user.

Have been living in my Motorhome since retirement, 15 yrs. Living in a motorhome should not be considered as homeless. There is a reason they are called "Motorhome", they have bedroom, with a bed, often queen size (small queen) and all the stuff that makes a bedroom. They have bathroom, with shower, toilet, washbasin, and hot & cold water. They have a kitchen, with a refrigerator, oven, stove, and microwave. They have a combo living room and entertainment center with TV and Often a pullout sofa bed. They have air-conditioning, furnace heater, and water heater. They are designed to operate with or without shoreline hook ups. Specially today with realitively low cost solar systems for electricity. From $40 to $80 a "honey wagon" service can extract the grey and black tanks, and resupply the fresh water tank. It is a tiny house with wheels. Motorhomes just need a space in a Safe Parking Neighborhood to park. Let's implement the SOLUTION proposed in my earlier posts.


Posted by Ok
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Dec 25, 2021 at 12:53 pm

Ok is a registered user.

@ Rouel,
Safe parking neighborhoods do exist. They are called “RV parks”, and RVs belong there and not in the middle of the city.
Same as tents belong to camping grounds. Your “solution” allows you to save some money on RV park fees, but why do people have to pay for your convenience?


Posted by Rouel - Urban Living
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 26, 2021 at 10:21 am

Rouel - Urban Living is a registered user.

RV Parks are for recreation, when I travel for recreation thru out our great country, I stay in RV Parks. At home here in Mountain View, I stayed at the last RV Park, until it became unaffordable (it does not exist anymore). And that is the point !! -- Some people have resorted to living in Motorhomes because they need a roof over their heads and renting has become unaffordable. And that is the point !! -- They are not living in Motorhomes for recreation, and most motorhomes dwellers don't need the services that are pushed on them by organizations with salaried personnel. They / we need the new neighborhoods SOLUTION as I have proposed for vehicle and motorhome living, with modest monthly fees to cover infrastructure costs, and cover some services for those who or when need them. And that is the point !!


Posted by Rouel - Urban Living
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Dec 26, 2021 at 10:45 am

Rouel - Urban Living is a registered user.

Again, Here is the SOLUTION:

Cities, counties, and the state can expand the Safe Parking Lots to create a new type of neighborhood, vehicle and motorhome spaces. These new neighborhoods, don't have to be free, say 25% of full time minimum wage after taxes. It is a modest monthly fee to cover infrastructure costs, and cover some services for those who or when need them. This new neighborhoods can be financially self sufficient. All vehicles need to be maintained, and Maybe a neighborhood for seniors on social security. The counties have the necessary permits to operate them like RV Park Campgrounds. Except they are not for recreation.


Posted by Ok
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Dec 27, 2021 at 12:38 pm

Ok is a registered user.

@ Rouel “I stayed at the last RV Park, until it became unaffordable”. Yes, free is definitely affordable. So, if my apartment is not affordable anymore to me, I’ll squat for free in apartment in MV? Great logic.


Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Email:


Post a comment

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Stay informed.

Get the day's top headlines from Mountain View Online sent to your inbox in the Express newsletter.

What to do if you get a noisy Rheem/Ruud heat pump water heater
By Sherry Listgarten | 15 comments | 4,645 views

Do Palo Alto city officials ever, ever have enough money?
By Diana Diamond | 48 comments | 3,439 views

Beverly Hills' hit restaurant Mírame completes the lineup at Menlo Park’s Springline
By The Peninsula Foodist | 3 comments | 2,797 views

Don't Wait Till Your Child is 42 to Say "I'm Proud of You."
By Chandrama Anderson | 6 comments | 2,495 views

Travelin’ Solo: Salvation Mountain and East Jesus
By Laura Stec | 0 comments | 1,664 views