Tonight: Menlo Park Planning Commission meets on Facebook housing, specific plan review

Continuing their ongoing review of the specific plan, the Menlo Park planning commissioners will take up the topic for a third time tonight, with a possible focus on infrastructure funding, how to ensure compliance for renovations and the design of a public plaza at Middle Avenue.

But first, the commission will hold a study session on the 394-unit apartment complex Facebook and real estate developer St. Anton Partners plan to build on 10 acres of land off Marsh Road, within walking distance of the social networking company's headquarters at 1 Hacker Way and Willow Road.

The complex, to be built from 3606 to 3639 Haven Avenue, will include 15 affordable housing units subsidized by the social networking company that will be income-restricted for 55 years and indistinguishable from other apartments at the complex, Facebook said.

St. Anton will provide another 23 affordable units, according to the staff report, adding 38 total to the city's inventory.

Construction of the $120 million, approximately 630,000-square-foot project should start this month, according to Facebook, and finish within two years.

The site design incorporates the addition of 400 trees, according to the planning staff report, as well as 691 parking spaces.

The Planning Commission does not need to approve the project, but will have the chance to provide feedback on the architectural design during the Oct. 7 study session.

The community development director will determine whether the project complies with the zoning code, which was recently modified during the city's housing element update to allow high-density residential development on the Haven Avenue site. With the provision of affordable units, the new zoning allows a density bonus to permit construction of 40 units per acre.

While staff agreed that the density bonus is appropriate, the report indicates they don't agree with the applicant's request to slightly raise the maximum building height from about 54 feet to a little over 57 feet. The current design proposes using the height increase to build three apartments on top of a fitness center; staff has suggested that those units could be put somewhere else on the site instead.

Click here to review the entire agenda and associated staff reports. Tonight's meeting, which starts at 7 p.m. in council chambers at the Civic Center at 701 Laurel St., will be shown online.


There are no comments yet. Please share yours below.

Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Choose a category: *

Since this is the first comment on this story a new topic will also be started in Town Square! Please choose a category that best describes this story.

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

Draeger’s Los Altos eyes upgrades, expansion
By Elena Kadvany | 4 comments | 3,350 views

Housing is for People
By Steve Levy | 33 comments | 2,332 views

College Visit: Lehigh and Lafayette
By John Raftrey and Lori McCormick | 4 comments | 1,650 views

Is Coffee a Date?
By Laura Stec | 18 comments | 1,419 views

Gratitude, Repairing and Avoiding Affairs
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 651 views