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Measure T opposition solidifies

Original post made on Sep 17, 2010

Being out of office doesn't mean you're out of politics in Menlo Park. A group of former council members and commissioners working alongside current office holders hopes to defeat Measure T, a ballot measure asking residents to approve the Bohannon Gateway project.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, September 17, 2010, 11:46 AM

Comments (49)

Posted by interesting, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Sep 17, 2010 at 12:21 pm

Consensus-based planning, if they agree with it.

Ask them how they feel about our downtown specific plan. The most broadly distributed plan process I have seen in this city. I bet they reject it for other ambiguous reasons like "quality of life" or "too intense"...

This is a group that has rejected Derry, rejected the Rosewood, rejected 1300 El Camino where Whole Foods would have gone (more than once), rejected 75 Willow development, rejected the Kepler's/Barrone development, rejected Sand Hill Road widening, rejected Dave Bohannon's first, smaller proposed project in the same place and now they reject another...

Go figure.

They should call the group "Andy Cohen Kitchen Cabinet" and just be honest about it.


Posted by Renamer, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 17, 2010 at 1:03 pm

I agree with the prior posting. This small cadre really can't honestly adopt a "measured growth" label when their prior track record points to effectively a NO GROWTH result.

A better name for this bunch of naysayers might be "drawbridge up."

I think we will find out that they represent a small minority in Menlo Park. Most people can look at the types of projects listed in the posting above and see why the City can reasonably move forward on them for a net benefit for the community. Doing so is especially in a time of tight City budgets - and the Gateway Project's Hotel will bring a guaranteed stream of revenues (guaranteed in a Development Agreement).

Independent experts hired by the City have validated the project economics and City benefits, too. 4 of the 5 on the City Council and 4 of the 7 on the Planning COmmission supported the project as well.

Menlo Park shouldn't say yet to just any development (and it doesn't!), but it also needs to be smart and responsible with our City's resources and avoid getting a reputation as a place that is mired in endless process followed by referendums, thus causing us to to routinely be avoided by those who can help appropriately drive the engine of economic growth and jobs.


Posted by Patti Fry, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 17, 2010 at 1:48 pm

To Interesting and Renamer,
You accuse me personally, as well as this new organization, of motivations and involvement in activities that are news to me!

Speaking for myself, I am proud of my involvement, at the request of the developer, in attempting to craft a modified Derry project that might be acceptable to both the developer and Derry family as well as the community. That seemed to be a constructive approach rather than risk years of legal battles (not by me). The resulting modified project was submitted by the developer and approved by the Planning Commission. It just awaits submission to the Council for approval.

Our new organization has tried to be clear - we are not opposed to growth but we do believe in planning for the type of community that will result from growth.
You are welcome to discuss these issues directly with me.


Posted by interesting, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Sep 17, 2010 at 2:39 pm

Are you proud of secret Derry negotiations hidden from citizens and council and commissions? I bet that entire list of supporters was secretly working the system.

Is that the transparency your candidate Chuck refers to? Secret sessions with developers that result in years of nothing on El Camino Real?

I cannot believe that you are creating an organization that acts like you just moved here. All of you at some point have been on a commission or a council or are right now and you act like you are outsiders.

You are the guys manipulating on the inside. Don't you know that?




Posted by Then What?, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 17, 2010 at 2:59 pm

So if a project that will bring new jobs and $4M in tax revenue is defeated, just raise property taxes to make it up from those who oppose it.


Posted by lessons learned, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 17, 2010 at 3:36 pm

Bohannon stands to make a lot of money from this project. So it is clear that many of the posters here are in his employ. They cannot tout the benefits of the project -- there are none -- so instead they resort to personal attacks on those who are trying to reveal the facts.

As far as I know, there is no monolithic group that has organized opposition to past projects enumerated by interesting. I was involved with the 75 Willow project and I can tell you that none of the people named in the article were involved in that effort. We obtained hundreds of signatures in opposition from people from all over Menlo Park. It did not make a difference, and a beautiful, award-winning, green office building only 20 years old was destroyed, and cheap housing erected in its place.

Some of you --those working for Bohannon -- are no doubt cheering at this story. But there's more! Although the residents of this new development should have known that they were moving onto the edge of the Sunset campus, they have now become huge opponents of Sunset and have managed to shut down Sunset's efforts to hold events that would increase revenues. Because of these people, Sunset may not survive.

One of the overarching problems with the Bohannon towers is that they are designed on a scale that does not fit with our city. We already know that the negative consequences, especially traffic, cannot be mitigated. If we are unlucky, we will find out about the unintended consequences too.

Bohannon offers nothing of value to Menlo Park. Job creation? Nope, it's not as if he were building a Walmart or Target. These are office jobs that will move from other buildings, probably depressing the commercial property market in the rest of Menlo Park. Money for schools? Not really. Most of the money is going to the Redwood City School District which will have to give an equal amount of money back to the state. Net gain to the schools: zero. Lots of lies. Lots of spinning the truth. When you have money, I guess you can try to get away with that, and you can for sure buy "friends" who will drive the getaway car for you.


Posted by Disappointed, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 17, 2010 at 3:54 pm

Zoning ordinances and General Plans are not the US Constitution. They must be more flexible to accomodate emerging opportunities if desired by the voters of a community. If it makes good sense to revise them - so be it.
The Menlo Gateway project will benefit Menlo Park and justifies zoning adjustments to make it possible.
It's time to get your heads out of he sand. Menlo Park is no longer a village and trying to make it one is unrealistic. MP is but one of many small pieces of a much larger puzzle. If we value our great open spaces but need to accomodate ever growing populations we must, like all other urban towns, accept incresing densities.


Posted by interesting, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Sep 17, 2010 at 5:26 pm

It is a monolithic group made up of about 10 or 12 people who sit behind Andy Cohen and talk through Andy Cohen. It is Patti and Paul and Morris and Jack et al, the same folks who negotiated in private outside of the public light and now they are trying to act like underdogs. Underdogs are not former mayors and planning commissioners, these are the puppeteers.

They will move to kill the downtown specific plan next. It is a larger strategy to undermine development through scare tactics about traffic and density, when lots are empty and sales tax is down and our industrial sector is aged.

Now they want long-term plans. But they oppose the results of such plans, so what do they want?

Control.


Posted by C'mon, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Sep 17, 2010 at 6:33 pm

Really, Patti? We're supposed to act like the last 20 years of obstruction by these individuals (Web Link) haven't happened? Jack Morris votes against Menlo Center and everything else, Paul Collachi votes against 1600 El Camino and Bohannon's original GP-compliant project, you yourself vote against the dinky building at El Camino and Cambridge, Morris appeals a tiny elevator addition to that building on Doyle, etc. etc. etc.

The amazing thing is that we're even at this point. This Council has 4 people who owe their elections in part to support from your crowd and you had Andy Cohen on the subcommittee that guided the negotiations, and you still weren't able to stop it! When you get together and commiserate, I'm sure you talk about how your former Council faves are now 'corrupt' and how all consultants are evil and how staff is in Bohannon's pocket and you probably even believe it to some degree, but MAYBE YOUR ARGUMENTS JUST AREN'T THAT GOOD.

No one's buying the idea that you're okay with 'measured growth'. Give us some credit.


Posted by Paul Collacchi, a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2010 at 6:52 pm

Our arguments must be pretty good, because if they weren't you wouldn't attacking us ad hominem. Here are they, read them for yourselves www.factsnothype.org.

Thanks for the traffic.

The whopper about Open Space is the next great pants-on-fire lie told by the Measure T campaign. Web Link


Posted by Paul Collacchi, a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2010 at 6:53 pm

Oops. Web Link


Posted by Gunslinger, a resident of another community
on Sep 18, 2010 at 7:30 am

These special interests who perpetually argue that more development is needed, more revenue is needed, are full of it. They serve themselves alone. The community as a whole always gets reamed by traffic and eventually bad elements who bring crime. If you like your community as it is, chances are any form of development will change it to something worse. So, if one must fault on a side, fault on the side of no development. The only thing development ever encourages is greater development. It's a slippery slope. Lock 'em down!


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 18, 2010 at 9:16 am

Before we approve any more major projects the general plan should be brought up to date. Modifying zoning piecemeal is a recipe for disaster. It may very well be that the Gateway project could be good for the city, but the general plan isn't up to date enough to be able to know. Also, all of the impacts on the city have not been taken into consideration.


Posted by A Witness, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Sep 18, 2010 at 3:19 pm

ad hominem? I don't think so. To name the people who have been behind "Say No to everything" movement is merely connecting the dots. These last 6 years of obstruction have not come out of the air. The "residentialist" party in Menlo Park dates back to Borak and Collacchi who had personal beefs with Bohannon and Stanford. Going way back, there's Jack Morris who may not have approved a single development in the city and don't even ask him about Sunset Magazine!

Look at the endorsement list on Collacchi's web site. It's the list of no-growth-never people, some of whom have been on Cohen's kitchen cabinet for the past 6 years.

Whether Measure T passes or not, the important issue is to keep another no growth extremist like Chuck Bernstein off the council.


Posted by lessons learned, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 18, 2010 at 4:41 pm

A Witness, looks as though you are proving Paul's points! Your post is all attack, not one word about the benefits of this project because there aren't any.

Lots of projects get built in this town. Occasionally, one will be proposed that is so massive or so inappropriate that it causes general concern. This is one of those projects.

Unless you are working for Bohannon, you should be grateful to those who stick their necks out to ensure that our city isn't sacrificed in the name of private profiteering. As far as I can tell, the No on T group has nothing to gain if the measure loses...but we all lose if it passes.


Posted by interesting, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Sep 19, 2010 at 4:45 pm

Derry was one of those projects too. So was the Kepler's building. So was Rosewood (Andy voted against it). So was 1300 El Camino Real. Chuck, the candidate for this group, has already stated he will seek to reject the downtown plan as he tries to do away with the Gateway project. At some point, all of the residents on the sidelines will see what is happening. Let's hope before November 2nd.


Posted by Dave, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Sep 20, 2010 at 12:45 pm

I am voting for measure T


Posted by Not a new group, just a new name!, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 20, 2010 at 5:54 pm

Traffic? It's here already... we don't live on an island, we are surrounded by other cities. If we don't take control of carefully choosing developments and generating revenue from them, you can be assured the community will still suffer from traffic and gain nothing.

The Gateway project is a well designed, well negotiated project that has been analyzed by neutral third parties in terms of a public benefits. It is how a city should grow rather than always having to add new taxes to residents. The local developer went out of his way to meet with community members and groups to get their input on this project and create something that will benefit the community in many ways. It WILL create new jobs both short and long term (I have no idea why "lessons learned" doesn't think construction or office jobs are real! New companies will want to locate here...) and the developer signed a hiring agreement for local workers to get hiring priority. The Belle Haven neighborhood is extremely supportive of this project and it's in their back yard! I hope the community listens to their voices and need for local jobs.

The El Camino and downtown plan is a great example of community members coming together, learning what we as a community face, learning aspects of planning and "trade offs" and making smart choices about what we could create that will help us all, including local business, residents, and neighboring cities. It's just a draft now; still room for changes, but it's progress in community engagement and action.

It makes me very frustrated that a "new" group would form stating they want such a process while actively campaigning against one that is taking place right now! I think it shows the truth: they are the drawbridge crowd. This is not a new group, just a new name.

Please don't allow anti-everything candidates Bernstein and Ohtaki (stated opposition to ECR/Downtown plan on his campaign flyer) on the council. Unless you want more taxes and more driving out of town to work and shop.



Posted by lessons learned, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 20, 2010 at 8:49 pm

"The Gateway project is a well designed, well negotiated project that has been analyzed by neutral third parties in terms of a public benefits."

And interestingly enough, that analysis -- Web Link -- shows that there are public benefits...but they are FAR outweighed by the costs and burden. It's a net negative to Menlo Park.

Bohannon has made it clear that this project will not proceed until/unless the economy recovers substantially. Therefore, any jobs that are created, including the short-term construction jobs, will come online only when the economy is robust. If the purpose of this project is to create jobs, it isn't very efficient!

By the way, it would be great to restrict this thread to posters who are not on the Bohannon payroll. Would we see any support for Measure T if that were the case? I suspect not!



Posted by Another Vote, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Sep 20, 2010 at 11:42 pm

I will also be voting for Measure T.


Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Sep 21, 2010 at 11:48 am

I am a strong believer of individual property rights. However, the Bohannon project does not sufficiently mitigate the infrastrucutre demands. I am all for people getting wealthy; but not at the expense of other people.

It is unfair for people to gain their wealth by putting burdens on other people. Mr. Bohannon's proposal, in its current form, will place significant traffic burdens on the people of Menlo Park.

He really needs to go back to the drawing board and put together a plan on how he will satisfactorily mitigate the infrastructure burdens. If he can do that then he will have my support.


Posted by Let's See Hank..., a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 21, 2010 at 12:14 pm

Every single business over there is in favor of the project. The neighborhood, that WILL be effected by the project, IS in favor of it, want it, and have wanted it for years. The "will place significant traffic burdens...." - that sounds very much like the no-growth rhetoric that has been going on for years. This is a BUSINESS district, it's not smack in the middle of our town, it's on the other side of 101. No one truly knows the traffic implications, and at this point the two sides disagree on this topic. YES, you'll get some traffic, I'm sure of it, but this excuse is getting very old, roads have traffic, rush hour has traffic, same stuff different day, stop the delay tactics!


Posted by Paul Collacchi, a resident of another community
on Sep 21, 2010 at 4:20 pm

The project is within 600 feet of three residential neighborhoods, none of which is Belle Haven. These include Suburban Park, Friendly Acres in Redwood City, and Linwood in Atherton.

Here is updated information from the fiscal impact analysis showing that the project produces a net annual loss to Menlo Park grammar schools: Web Link

Again, I thank you for the traffic.


Posted by Let's See Hank..., a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 21, 2010 at 7:22 pm

Excellent link to YOUR website Paul, with YOUR trumped up #'s. Even IF these numbers are correct, and that's a HUGE IF, these projected #'s for dollars "lost" by the schools are a joke. MPCSD has over a $30M budget, these are mere pennies you are referring too. Furthermore, how about accounting for the the benefits of possible office space for the parents of kids that go to these schools, but have to wait an extra hour or two for their parents to come home from offices much further away? See we can add ridiculous things too! In addition, since when did you and your group of 8 become so concerned about the schools? C'mon, think of something else your group of 8 naysayers can say to override the will of the people. Possibly an Indian Burial Ground?


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 21, 2010 at 9:15 pm

"C'mon, think of something else your group of 8 naysayers can say to override the will of the people. "

"will of the people"? uh, aren't you jumping the gun a little? It hasn't been voted on yet has it? I'll be voting NO. It doesn't adequately address impacts to the city of Menlo Park which means, once again, the tax payer will be left holding the bag while the developer rides of with tons of money.


Posted by lessons learned, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 21, 2010 at 11:49 pm

Go on, Let's See, click on those "trumped up" numbers. Yep, they take you to the city's website. The numbers that show our schools LOSING money are straight from the city's fiscal analysis!

If you are looking for unsubstantiated numbers, go ask Bohannon and cronies. They have plenty of them.

P.S. Bohannon seems to be assuming that parents will be too busy to check his data and will vote for his project because of the benefits to the schools. But he is wrong! I am a parent in the MPCSD, one of many parents who has figured out that Measure T is a scam perpetrated by a very rich man who doesn't care about the wellbeing of his own city.


Posted by ThirtyYearsinMenlo Park, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 22, 2010 at 7:36 am

Paul Collacchi's numbers are bogus and he's selective as to which "facts" abut Menlo Gateway he chooses to nitpick. See the City's Fiscal Impact Analysis at Web Link under the heading Final Fiscal Impact Analysis - March 2010


Posted by Patti Fry, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 22, 2010 at 8:57 am

Thanks for pointing readers to the Final Fiscal Impact Analysis, which shows that Menlo Park's K-8 schools would be negatively affected (see pages 64 and 102).

There are claims that "local schools" benefit $1.8 million. Well, that conveniently omits the related costs (and loss of state funding for Revenue Limit districts) totaling nearly $1.2 million. This information also is in the Final Fiscal Impact Analysis.

About traffic - The Environmental Impact Report (3.9.9) assumes that 10% of the employees for the jobs directly generated by the project will live in Menlo Park. The total eventual jobs is estimated at approximately 2,500 (about 1,900 net new jobs) so this means that about 250 employees could be Menlo Park residents and the remaining 2,250 would be commuters.


Posted by Let's See Hank..., a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 22, 2010 at 12:30 pm

Same ol' rhetoric from the no growthers, same ol' scare tactics. When will we start seeing fliers with open toxic oil drums strewn all over the east side, if Bohannon were to complete the project? I just find it amazing that you find something to scream about with every single project, it's amazing. I guess there aren't any more Spotted Owls in Menlo Park? Let's not forget MP Residents, this is the same gang that brought you the blight where the Derry Project was supposed to begin 4 years ago, the abandon theater, the abandon car lots, the Mattison Property, the 12+ vacant stores because who would want to do business in MP!? Etc.
Last business out, shut the door!


Posted by Paul Collacchi, a resident of another community
on Sep 22, 2010 at 5:57 pm

Our website gives you links right into the actual official documents themselves, including the EIR, Fiscal Impact Analysis, the Developer Agreement, transcripts from planning Commissions meetings, and so much more! We don't use anything but official data. That's the beauty of the internet.

Here's a link to the official FIA showing the net school revenues. Web Link

Here's a link showing that the elementary schools lose money.
Web Link

Thanks for driving traffic to our website. Web Link


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 22, 2010 at 6:10 pm

To give you a concrete example of how poorly the City of Menlo Park represented and responded to the impacts of this project I suggest that you read the impact report's comments on the Fire District and the City's response:

"Based on interviews with the Fire Chief and Fire Marshall, the District's expenditures are
anticipated to increase due to the need for a new aerial apparatus or ladder truck.
District staff indicated that ladder trucks are required to respond to emergencies at buildings of
more than three stories. Because eight-story office buildings and an 11-story hotel are proposed in
the Project Area, an aerial apparatus would be required to respond to emergencies at the property.
Currently, the District owns and operates one ladder truck. Truck 1 is housed at Station 1 and its
100 foot ladder is pre-plumbed for elevated water application. Located 3.35 miles away at 300
Middlefield Road, west of Highway 101, Truck 1's response time to the project site would be
within 8 minutes, depending on traffic conditions. While this response time is in keeping with
applicable standards, its distance from the Project Area is not.19 Based on the District's 2004 Public
Protection Classification Study completed by the Insurance Services Organization (ISO), ladder
trucks should be located within a 2.5 mile radius.
District staff indicate that an additional ladder truck, located east of Highway 101, would be needed
to meet acceptable standards for urban aerial ladder truck coverage. It is expected this new ladder
truck would replace an existing fire engine and be located at Station 77, the closest station to the
Sites. Station 77, at 1467 Chilco Street, is within 1.45 miles from the Project Area and has a
response time to the Site of approximately two minutes. Based on estimates provided by the
District, the one-time capital cost for purchasing a ladder truck would range from $1.0 million to
$1.5 million. The existing engine at Station 77 was purchased in 2001 and per Schedule I of the
Menlo Park Fire Protection District Budget is currently due to be replaced. It has an estimated
replacement cost of $625,000. Hence, the acquisition of an additional ladder truck would represent
a net new capital cost to the District of approximately $375,000 to $875,000 over and above the
existing need.20
A new aerial apparatus at Station 77 would generate additional personnel and maintenance
requirements that would increase the District's annual expenditures. Currently three shifts with
three personnel each staff the fire engines. However, the District's Tentative Agreement with the
Firefighters Union would require four personnel to staff ladder trucks. The replacement of an
engine with a ladder truck would result in the need for three additional FTE (one person for each of
three shifts). According to the Fire Chief, costs for each position range from $165,700 to
$244,900, depending on seniority and skill level. For purposes of estimation, an average staff cost
of $205,000 per year has been used, including salary, fringe benefits, and overhead costs. In total,
these new costs from additional staff and maintenance costs would amount to $615,000 annually."

In spite of this the City basically told the Fire District - "We got as much out of Bohannon for us as we could, what you need is your problem". A perfect example of irresponsible local government.


Posted by Paul Collacchi, a resident of another community
on Sep 22, 2010 at 6:15 pm

Here's Web Link a map showing two residential neighborhoods within 600 feet of the project. These neigbhorhoods will be subject to traffic related noise in excess of Menlo Park's noise ordinance.


Posted by Interested, a resident of another community
on Sep 22, 2010 at 6:19 pm

Peter, you would know better than I. Are the permits required by Bohannon from the MPFD considered "Mandatory" ?


Posted by Paul Collacchi, a resident of another community
on Sep 22, 2010 at 6:21 pm

Here's Web Link the link to what Peter just transcribed. He's not making it up either.

The project stiffed the fire department. I do not hold developer's responsible for what council member's allow them to get away with. I hold council member's responsible to do their jobs to negotiate for the community.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 22, 2010 at 6:27 pm

Interested asks:"Are the permits required by Bohannon from the MPFD considered "Mandatory" ?

Yes, but the Fire District would be in a politically difficult position to say NO we cannot serve this project with our existing resources if the City had already approved the project. The Fire District refused to allowing IKEA to open until IKEA complied with the necessary fire codes. The response times issues for the Bohannon project are more problematic because theoretically the Fire District could rob Peter to pay Paul by moving its only ladder truck currently located at Station 1 on Middlefield to Station 77 in East Menlo Park - thereby depriving the western portion of Menlo Park of the necessary ladder truck protection.


Posted by Paul collacchi, a resident of another community
on Sep 22, 2010 at 6:38 pm

The underlying issue is that Menlo Park has not legally adopted the necessary community standards it needs to adopt to impose conditions on projects through CEQA. In the case of the fire department, Bohannon's $500/hr lawyer Tim Tosta played hardball by pointing out that the "Fire District" response time standard was not a "legal" standard. It certainly would be a "legal" standard if the City were to adopt it. In a similar manner, the city had not and has not yet adopted standards for Green House Gas emisssion either, or any number of important standards. (For example, if the previous building height in an area was 35feet there is no need to worry about shadows or visual impacts from afar, but if you raise that to 140 feet, then its quite possible to cast shadows or to block views from afar.)

Menlo Park is was not prepared to process an application for a project of this magnitude but it did anyway.

For the Fire Department, in the future, it should work with the city, to get the City to adopt its response times and service levels, as CITY response times and service levels in its CEQA analysis of projects.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm

Paul suggests:'For the Fire Department, in the future, it should work with the city, to get the City to adopt its response times and service levels, as CITY response times and service levels in its CEQA analysis of projects."

Sadly working with the City of Menlo Park is a losing proposition for the Fire District which could not get the City to even adopt the new National Standards on fire sprinklers. The City's attitude is if we don't get paid to do something then we have no interest in the safety of our citizens - SAD.


Posted by Interested, a resident of another community
on Sep 22, 2010 at 7:30 pm

Mr. Collachi.

"For the Fire Department, in the future, it should work with the city"


Good luck with that. The City has always taken the position "we got ours, now you get yours".


Peter. If the only ladder truck is moved to accommodate Bohannon, will that mean it can no longer meet its mandate for other portions of its service area. If so, it would seem it has every ability to deny any kind of Occupancy permit to Bohannon.


Posted by Interested, a resident of another community
on Sep 22, 2010 at 7:32 pm

Mr. Collachi

Not to belabor the point


The City always seeks Fire Dept input on issues of development. Unfortunately once it has them it ignores them.


Posted by Let's See Hank..., a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 22, 2010 at 11:12 pm

Again I ask Menlo Park Residents, are we going to allow this group to once again rid us of another opportunity? I truly don't understand it. I've been watching this blog now go on for hours between one Atherton resident and another non-resident (sorry Mr. Collachi, I don't know where you live now, but I know you don't live in MP). There is ALWAYS going to be an imperfection with an EIR and/or CEQA. Anyone can argue CEQA, it's the biggest tool that someone can use that wants to continue to delay a project, any project. Please MP residents it's obvious what's going on, these issues this group trumps up, are NOT life threatening, or a deal breaker, they can be worked out. Stop the delay tactics Mr. Collachi and crew and stay in your own community!


Posted by Menlo Park, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 23, 2010 at 7:08 am

"these issues this group trumps up, are NOT life threatening, or a deal breaker, they can be worked out."

Yes they can be worked out, but it needs to occur BEFORE measure T is passed it won't happen after as Bohannon will have absolutely NO reason to make any changes. This is an opportunity, an opportunity for a big developer to screw us once again.


Posted by interesting, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Sep 23, 2010 at 8:36 am

This is great stuff. Paul Collacchi now thinks he speaks for MP residents. The same Paul who led the Santa Cruz Avenue street furniture joke. This is the same Paul who accused a consultant of bagging their information.

Paul, Katie Ferrick lives in Suburban Park and Henry Riggs lives in Lorelei Manner.

Why do you feel you get to speak for these communities when you don't even live here?

I would say that you think far too much of your own graphs and your own little political hit pieces to even see that this community has representation.

As for the Fire District, getting more of MP's sales tax than MP itself should suffice. We subsidize Peter Carpenter's town enough.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 23, 2010 at 9:29 am

Interested states:"As for the Fire District, getting more of MP's sales tax than MP itself should suffice"

The Fire District receives NO sales tax revenue.


Posted by Nonsense, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 23, 2010 at 12:33 pm

I believe Mr. Collacchi still owns a house in Menlo Park.

Unless 'interesting' feels that Menlo Park property owners who do not live within Menlo Park should somehow be disenfranchised from commenting publicly on development issues that effect the value of their Menlo Park investiments, I think you'll raise the ire of many.


Posted by Interested, a resident of another community
on Sep 23, 2010 at 3:43 pm

Peter. Just for clarification that statement was made by "interesting" not "interested". For the record I am not interesting.

I feel a Freudian Slip approaching.



Hope that gave you guys a smile. It never hurts. :-)


Posted by Let's See Hank..., a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 23, 2010 at 4:54 pm

"Menlo Park" states, ".an opportunity for a big developer to screw us once again!"
What the heck are you talking about? Where has there been ANY development in the past 20+ years, where we've been "screwed"? Are you from the "big business, big corporations, big developers are all bad, bad, bad" camp? C'mon, let's be realistic. This town has not seen development since the Rose Hotel, which by all accounts was a very clean transaction where no one is "getting screwed". I can only think of the other newer development that is absolutely horrible, what an eye sore, outrageously small town unfriendly.............Keplers and Barrone's! You no growthers have got to look for more ammunition, or at least make some sense. Your song and dance is getting really old.


Posted by For the record, a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Sep 23, 2010 at 5:06 pm

(1) I will be voting for Measure T.

(2) to "A Witness" -- you stated that "Going way back, there's Jack Morris who may not have approved a single development in the city"
That is patently untrue.

Jack was on the Council for 8 years, 4 of which I was on ths Council with him. Jack voted for the Sun Microsystems campus which was also 1 million square feet like Gateway. And he voted for other developments as well, not only as a Councilmember/Mayor but also as a Planning Commissioner for many years before he got elected to the Council.

Gail Slocum
Former Mayor







Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 23, 2010 at 9:08 pm

Let's see Hank:

The Gateway development is going to screw the citizens of Menlo Park. It will create impacts to housing , traffic and myriad other things that have not been adequately addressed. We will be left holding the bag to pay for these things and getting "screwed." You know it and I know it and Bohannon knows it because he's doing the screwing. He gets a big fat upzoning with no requirements to mitigate the TRUE impacts of this project. I have no problem with development (hell I build for a living) when the impacts are addressed and paid for. This project DOES NOT DO THAT.


Posted by E.D., a resident of Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on Sep 23, 2010 at 9:42 pm

He won't be able to get it up because there's no outside institutional lender support to finance it. Jobs! Revenue! Nice foreplay with the city staff and council, but no delivery until legitimate institutional funding sources get over the glut of lodging and office space plaguing the 101 corridor.
Sewage treatment plant odors and Bedwell Park are no draws for knowledgable biz travellers. Just spend some time at the Marsh/Bayfront intersection and you'll get the drift.
What seasoned biz traveler would pay $200./nt for a crappy Marriott when you get the 4 Seasons just down the pike with executive treatment?
The smart money will still find the proximity of the vibe of hip,trendy downtown PA to be irresistable.
You're stuck, Dave, you think Asian money will beat a path to your door? They ain't that gullible.
Sorry, Dave, you're at least 10 years too early.



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