An Architectural Review Board in MP?
Original post made by Marianne Q. Dean on Feb 9, 2007
I think the polarized debate is unproductive ... there are win-win solutions ... lets find them.
Hmmm ... should we enlarge the city council by 2 for a total of 7 to help break up the block voting? More voices may broaden the council's perspective.
on Feb 9, 2007 at 7:45 am
There are several ways to move the conversation from a polarized debate to a constructive solution. Many of our neighboring cities and towns have examined the idea of architectural review and have come up with successful solutions that respect neighborhood integrity and simultaneously allow for growth and enhancement of property values. I would welcome a chance to participate with others to find a good solution for Menlo Park. What do others think?
on Feb 9, 2007 at 6:58 pm
"...massive,ugly, poorly designed blocks for which there are many unfortunate examples" is a pretty general statement obviously meant to stir reaction. But I'd love to hear specifics. I have yet to see a design in my neighborhood that I'd describe as poor taste. Our extremely well educated, upper socio-economic class inhabitants are not out to make victims of those around them and alienate everyone who owns a rancher. The cries of suburban blight are a little too NIMBY for me.
on Feb 9, 2007 at 10:56 pm
So, Marianne, when you refer to "housing/building/density" together under a header that asks if we should have architectural review in Menlo Park, are you referring to downtown development that involves block-sized development (as in the Derry project), or are you talking about new homes in the R1 neighborhoods that are referred to derisively as McMansions?
I think J. Edgar thought you were talking about residential neighborhoods (I did, anyway).
In either case, architectural review would not be an outgrowth of increased council membership. This council is on the record in stating it is loathe to "design from the dais." Therefore, if you truly desire a city endorsed body to conduct architectural review, it would have to come, in my opinion, from a change in the mission of the planning commission. Barring that, the city would need to create a new commission with the mandate to conduct such reviews.