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Arrillaga protest gathers signatures

Original post made on Dec 20, 2012

Save Menlo, a group of community members not thrilled with the massive eight-acre, mixed-use complex developer John Arrillaga wants to build on Stanford's car lots in Menlo Park, has been busy.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, December 20, 2012, 8:46 AM

Comments (14)

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Posted by WIll
a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Dec 20, 2012 at 1:06 pm

Yes, Save Menlo FROM Save Menlo! So, stymie development and raise property taxes. Wonderful!


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 20, 2012 at 1:17 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Of course - let's keep the empty car lots as empty car lots. Change is very dangerous.


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Posted by WhoRUpeople
a resident of another community
on Dec 20, 2012 at 1:22 pm

So why the goal for 500 signatures? That's only about 1% of the popultion. What do they do with the petition if they get 500 signatures? Please don't tell me that's all it takes to stop something that is in full compliance with existing zoning--although in MP that would not surprise me.


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Posted by Long time resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Dec 20, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Why do groups like Save Menlo, who represent such a small minority of actual residents of Menlo, continue to waste their time and effort. With the newly elected City Council being more Pro Growth, hopefully these groups will be squashed and put out to pasture.
El Camino is the gateway to our city and it needs to be cleaned up. The car lots are en eyesore and haven for crime.

How many contractors have walked away from the Cadillac property and the Derry property in the past 10 years. If Menlo provides the infrastructure, these areas will flourish as will the city.... and lower my property taxes.


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Posted by Longer time resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 20, 2012 at 6:43 pm

Ugly empty car lots or bustling medical offices -- are those our only choices? I think not, and the petition is trying to force the city to seek a middle ground, one that will not have such a hugely negative impact on so many of us.

I note that the pro-Arrillagists and the loudest "you're all NIMBY!" whiners seem to live nowhere near El Camino and have absolutely no consideration for those of us who rely on El Camino every day.

Our city council needs to be clear on this critical point: residents come first. Whether or not Arrillaga can make his next few billion by exploiting our city's inflated land values should not be our city's concern.


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Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 20, 2012 at 6:45 pm

Long time:

no "contractors have walked away from the Cadillac property." A developer owns and has plans to develop it. Those plans were developed before the 2008 economic melt down. They haven't proceeded because it doesn't pencil out. As to the other car dealership properties that have been sitting vacant; Stanford owns them and has contiued to collect rents on them up until now. You want to know why nothing has happened there? Ask Stanford. And while you're at it ask the City Council why they didn't impose sanctions on Stanford for letting those properties deteriorate. The council could have forced Stanford to do something with them and at the very least collected some income for the city. Instead, as usual, they bent over for Stanford. Try driving down El Camino at 5 pm and tell me what you think. Then think about what it will look like after Arillaga builds his medical office buildings. Can you say gridlock?


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Posted by Enough
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 21, 2012 at 8:27 am

I'll take the empty car lots any day.
Please stop over-building the peninsula.


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 21, 2012 at 9:37 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

The now extant car dealerships generated a lot of trips and traffic. Does Menlo Park really want to stop building of commercial projects? Are the Menlo Park residents prepared to shoulder the tax burden or decreased services that would result?

The city has established zoning regulations for these properties - are you prepared to pay the price (which will be huge) of down zoning these properties?


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Posted by Longer time resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 21, 2012 at 10:43 am

Stanford owns that land, and managed to profit for years by doing nothing but collecting lease money. No benefit at all to Menlo Park. So it's pretty cheap to try to scare people with vague threats about the negative impacts of downzoning. And equating the traffic generated by car dealerships to that created by medical offices simply does not pass the straight face test.

I wonder if any of you namecallers have actually looked at the petition? What you don't seem to realize is that the EIR was based on development of a certain amount of property, with the assumption that a number of property owners would choose to redevelop their land to take advantage of the new zoning. Arrillaga/Stanford is grabbing most of that EIR capacity for itself, leaving other El Camino property owners high and dry, with no ability under the current plan to renovate. Does the phrase "robber baron" mean anything to you?


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 21, 2012 at 10:59 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"And equating the traffic generated by car dealerships to that created by medical offices simply does not pass the straight face test."

Why not? How many trips per day did the car dealerships create? I suspect a lot more than will the proposed development.


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Posted by Gern
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Dec 21, 2012 at 12:29 pm

Peter Carpenter wrote:

"How many trips per day did the car dealerships create? I suspect a lot more than will the proposed development."

Oh, Peter, you clown prince of Arrillagaville, you did write that with a straight face, didn't you! Back in the real world we're well aware that this medical office development will merely shift the car lots *onto* El Camino Real for several hours each day, because that's where thousands of unmoving cars will be found, parked for all intents and purposes, if not for sale.

We've discussed this development in many different Town Square threads and the single question no proponent cares to touch, much less answer, is: What do we do about the traffic? If you believe that 5,000-10,000 additional weekday car trips on this stretch of El Camino will *not* be a disaster, with no mitigation in the offing, then you inhabit a fantasy land with which many of us are completely unfamiliar.

Gern


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 21, 2012 at 12:35 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Gern - you did not answer the simple question - How many trips per day did the car dealerships create? Why do you wish to avoid the facts?


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Posted by M L
a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Dec 21, 2012 at 2:09 pm

This project is far from my neighborhood. But anything that has to do with Mr. Arrillaga, should be carefully studied.

We should create a coalition to oppose both Mr. Bohannon's and Mr. Arrillaga's game of corrupting the process.

The traffic their projects create will not be anything they will have to suffer. Profit is their sole intererst.


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Posted by James Madison
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 21, 2012 at 3:05 pm

I hate to say I told you so, but it will be futile for those concerned about the scale of the proposed Arriaga development to resist it at this stage. What they should have done is join with the too few of us who opposed the City Council giving Stanford and its developers a blank check to create El Grande Canon de El Camino Real as part of the El Camino Plan. Menlo Park needs housing; Stanford wants offices, because they are more profitable. The only hope now is for the market to limit the proportion of office space to be built, for housing to be the default and for the grace of John Arriaga to limit the mass of the development. At least the revised proposal looked to be more appropriate than the initial version.


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