News

Menlo Park backing off lawn size limit

 

Menlo Park appears to be backing off a controversial proposal to limit lawn size in new or rehabilitated landscaping projects for single-family homes.

In a staff report released in advance of a City Council study session Tuesday, Feb. 9, city management recommends that the city allow homeowners to calculate a "water budget," instead of accepting a strict lawn size limitation. While the staff had previously recommended that the city limit lawn size to the greater of 500 square feet or 25 percent of total landscaped area, the new recommendation describes the size limit as optional.

The recommendation comes as the city works to revise its water-efficient landscaping ordinance, in response to a new state law that went into effect Jan. 1.

Under recommendations by the staff and/or Menlo Park's Environmental Quality Commission, the revised ordinance would apply only to new or rehabilitated landscaping of over 1,000 square feet, with certain exceptions. It would require covers for new or replacement pools or spas.

The new recommendation would not require irrigation meters for single-family dwellings, unlike the previous one.

The city expects to have an approved ordinance in place by the end of the month.

Comments

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Posted by Ram Duriseti
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Feb 5, 2010 at 12:30 pm

With 20% of energy use in California going to water transport and securing water resources while farm water acquisition and energy subsidies for the same are taken from the collective fund, your lawn becomes my problem. Otherwise, it would be none of my business.

If people are against city controls on water resource use, they should also be against farm subsidies, against energy subsidies, and for an even more consumption based fee structure for use of water and energy resources. Profligacy on the public dime seems to be bringing this state and this country down.


Like this comment
Posted by Kristin Kuntz-Duriseti
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Feb 5, 2010 at 1:13 pm

I would like to correct the impression that our city staff has "backed off" the turf limit; in fact, calculating a water budget has always been an option the turf limit.


Like this comment
Posted by Regulation Sensitive
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Feb 5, 2010 at 4:11 pm

While well intentioned, this new regulation was unnecessary. As pointed out, residential water usage is dwarfed by agricultural usage.

The more serious problem now is paying for staff time. It must be limited at every opportunity. Enforcing a mostly symbolic ordinance like lawn area restrictions could get expensive.

The new recommendations are a reasonable compromise that will remind us not to waste water.


Like this comment
Posted by Common Sense
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Feb 6, 2010 at 9:34 pm


[I'm taking the immigration comments offline, so posters can get back to the topic of what Menlo Park should do with regard to landscape regulations to conserve water. > Editor]


Like this comment
Posted by better approach
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Feb 8, 2010 at 10:46 am

A water budget makes more sense. The city is required to pass something or have the state rules prevail.


Like this comment
Posted by Rob Tanner
a resident of Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on Feb 8, 2010 at 9:06 pm

[I'm taking the immigration comments offline, so posters can get back to the topic of what Menlo Park should do with regard to landscape regulations to conserve water. > Editor]


Like this comment
Posted by Right
a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Feb 8, 2010 at 9:32 pm

[I'm taking the immigration comments offline, so posters can get back to the topic of what Menlo Park should do with regard to landscape regulations to conserve water. > Editor]


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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