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City poised to settle lawsuit involving former Cadillac site on El Camino Real

Original post made on Jul 16, 2010

The Menlo Park City Council is poised to approve a settlement agreement with a group called Concerned Citizens of Menlo Park, which in November 2009 sued the city and would-be developers of the property at 1300 El Camino Real after the city issued preliminary approvals for a planned office/retail project for that site.


Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, July 16, 2010, 6:04 PM

Comments (9)

Posted by No good guys, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jul 16, 2010 at 7:41 pm

This outcome is thoroughly awful. There are no good guys here. The named plaintiff and the anti-competitive unions behind him, the city for doing their dirty work, the courts for not having thrown this case out, and the developers for folding. Who knows what type or what size businesses belong in that project site? What we do know is that once again, we've sacrificed property rights, due process, and the interests of the citizens in a fair hearing to the machinations of unholy trinity of the organized labor, capital, and the self interested politicians.


Posted by Instigated by Beltramo/Draeger, a resident of Atherton: other
on Jul 16, 2010 at 9:48 pm

No doubt the union was motivated by the anticompetitive Draeger and Beltramo clans
Retail Clerks union bringing a CEQA based lawsuit?
What a great cover for the Brahmins


Posted by Not a Foodie, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Jul 17, 2010 at 8:11 am


I haven't bought anything from Draegers or Beltramos since they organized their fake grass roots campaign a few years ago against allowing Bevmo to come to Menlo Park. Shame on the other merchants who assisted. This time they were clever enough to hide their hands behind the union that represents the Draegers workers. Lets hope that the union extracts a high price next time they negotiate with the Draegers.


Posted by Safeway/TJ fan, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Jul 18, 2010 at 8:56 am

This would be an interesting story to dig into- who was really behind the lawsuit and why? Of course, if you think the Almanac is going to investigate its biggest advertisers (look at the Draeger's insert or Beltramo's ads sometime), you're pretty naive.

A side issue is the absurdity of CEQA lawsuits- how did something allegedly about saving the environment become about limiting competition? Get ready for more fun with that and the downtown plan- the Downtown Old-Timers Anti-Change Club will suddenly act like 'ecowarriors' when that EIR is out.


Posted by legal abuse, a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Jul 18, 2010 at 11:10 pm


Do you remember CEQA was used against the Allied Arts Guild renovation? The guild won in council and in court but the decision was appealed and the panel upheld the appeal. Unbelieveable! the gall of a judge going beyond the law and local control to legislate from the bench.

As for the draegers, it's not hard to imagine them quietly making a phone call to the union and suggesting the mischief. they would get plausible deniability and yet keep a competitor out.


Posted by R.Gordon, a resident of another community
on Jul 19, 2010 at 3:40 pm

Would a pool hall with a beer and wine license be out of the question?
It would keep kids off the street and a fun way for them to bond with their fathers.......divorced or widowed.


Posted by wewantchoice, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jul 19, 2010 at 6:22 pm

As an MP resident, I still shop at Whole Foods.


Posted by Irony Redux, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Jul 20, 2010 at 5:47 pm


"... which allows private citizens acting as public-interest representatives to sue government entities."

Ah, the rich irony of the above quote! As a citizen, I revel in my good fortune that the union and unnamed plaintiffs acted on my behalf.


Posted by fascism in MP, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jul 20, 2010 at 7:26 pm

Oh yes...let's allow private entities to stifle competition in Menlo Park, thereby driving up prices for all of us. I will never shop at Beltramos or Draeger's again. And I will continue to patronize one of the nearby Whole Foods. By the way..when I travel to Los Altos or Palo Alto or Redwood City to shop at Whole Foods, I also tend to run other errands, so the sales tax that MP could derive from those purchases will go to other cities.

It's appalling that our city could not stand up to these bully tactics.


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