Posted by Hates Shoddy Reporting, a resident of the Menlo Park: Downtown neighborhood, on Jan 11, 2012 at 3:06 pm
What a shame that the Almanac is so easily used as a tool of a few Menlo Park businesses that are opposing some real downtown planning.
We all know that Richard Draeger doesn't like the downtown planning process. And the so-called "news" of his lawyers sending a new letter that makes the same, false allegations made in September
should tell Almanac readers everything they need to know about this "news" organization -- it is simply a mouthpiece for a few downtown businesses that are concerned with one thing only -- protecting their business and thwarting competition that might result in better services and lower cost products for Menlo Park residents.
Regarding a possible church expansion, as one who has been fully invested in this planning process for a long time, I think Draeger's lawyers have it just plain wrong!
From what I understand, the church was considering some expansion back in 2008, but not any more. Instead, they expanded into Mountain View and San Mateo, spending bundles of money somewhere other than Menlo Park and bringing commerce to those areas. Their parking problem is since alleviated in Menlo Park and I'd be willing to take a big wager that they are NOT planning a parking expansion, a gym or a new worship center right now.
Did the Almanac contact the church? Did the Almanac do anything other than publish the false statements of Draeger's lawyers?
If not, I wonder whether the Almanac is willing to run a follow-up article after they do contact the church. I'll bet Draeger's lawyers are just plain wrong. (Sadly, they probably knew that when they sent their letter.)
Not only that, but as someone who has watched MPPC from afar, I've been impressed with what good community citizens they've been in so many ways.
Weren't they the ones who brought back ACE Hardware Store to Menlo Park through their long-term lease of 700 Santa Cruz?
Didn't they open a very successful Fair Trade Marketplace in one of the many vacant storefronts in Menlo Park over the holidays, helping the city's tax base and increasing foot traffik downtown? (Perhaps a reporter from the Almanac would care to report for the rest of us how well or poorly that little business did?)
Isn't this the church that cancels its services occasionally to send thousands of members into the community to work helping community organizations, regardless of religious affiliation?
Aren't these our neighbors?