From the North Bayshore Precise Plan Community Workshop on October 22, 2015, the City has prepared an online survey (link below) to gather feedback on desired residential development in North Bayshore. The survey is open until Thursday, November 9, 2015.
Please call the Planning Secretary at 650-903-6306 if you need any
Dear Mayor Inks and City Council members:
The Mountain View Coalition for Sustainable Planning, a group of Mountain View residents that is not affiliated with any other organization, would like to comment on Question 4, one of the issues that Staff is asking Council's opinion on.
This concerns a letter that Michael Grehl of Merlone Geier Partners wrote to Peter Gilli on October 23, suggesting that Staff might want to consider processing the requested entitlements for Phase II as a P District rather than as an amendment to the San Antonio Center Precise Plan.
The staff report for this item, pages 26‐27, states that
"The primary difference between the two approaches is the potential scope of the P(9) Precise Plan Amendment could include discussion of land in the shopping center outside of MGP's control. Staff has expected the P(9) Precise Plan Amendment would only consider the MGP Phase II property, but the P District approach makes this more formal and clear."
We have been wondering about the motivation for Mr. Grehl's letter, since requests like this are not usually for the sole purpose of accommodating Staff. Before Council comments on Question 4, we hope that they will verify that in a P District scenario, the following would still occur:
1. Application of mandates for this development related to the in‐progress new San Antonio Precise Plan (SAPP), covering the entire San Antonio Change Area. Staff and Council have previously indicated that the new SAPP standards will be required.
2. Resolution of any problems that the proposed project will cause for people living, working, doing business, or travelling in the entire area, not just on the land that MGP controls; and especially those problems related to contiguous properties. Staff has said that this geographic "scope" issue is the most significant difference between the two types of zoning. What are the likely specific impacts on life in Mountain View if a P District process is selected?
We would also like to commend Staff highly for the excellent suggestions in this report for improving design of the project. We hope to see, among other things, additional mobility improvements (including full mode separation for everyone walking, biking, or driving within the project), and other design changes that will make it a more pleasant place to be in.
The City Council had a second study session, on 2/26/13, on proposed office towers (and parking structures) at 700 E. Middlefield. There will probably be a third. Council comments included the following:
"Are we doing piecemeal projects?" (Staff: "Until we have a Precise Plan for the area.")
"What is the implication for our RHNA numbers?"
"What about using the Light Rail, instead of shuttles, to get employees to the downtown station?"
"Shouldn't we be more proactive about improving transportation for people in the North Whisman area, rather than waiting for a crisis? There are a lot of people working there now!"
"This proposal is an old-style office park with much bigger buildings. LEED Platinum has nothing to do with neighborhood structure. Where are there enticements to take the train, with these overwhelming views of the freeway? There should be viewable local services, a larger trip reduction requirement tied to a greater absolute increase in trips, and reduced parking."
"These buildings are not accessible by foot; they're fronted by an onramp."
"Even people living nearby will have to drive there. This is not transit-oriented, just tall buildings visible from a freeway."
"There should be a net benefit for the community. Need a big trip reduction, ways not to need parking. Community benefits need not be proportional to the size of the project: in the current environment, it's going to take a lot more from the developer. The buildings need to be reoriented--the open space planned is visible only to people in the buildings."
"The open space should be visible and available to the public."
"Unfortunately developer financing is tied to the amount of parking."
"Why not reduce the square footage? Do we really need to have 1.0 FAR?"
"An EIR requiring 'overriding considerations' should lead to mitigation fees due."
"There could be ZIP cars there for employees to use during the day."
"TDM should be designed to produce a 25-30% trip reduction."
"We need to discuss all this, not just have each Councilmember provide comments to Staff."