UPDATE: Rail meeting time changed


A presentation on the design of the California high-speed-rail system has been moved from 3:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 19. The meeting will take place in the City Council chambers.

The earlier meeting time was arranged to allow for more discussion with rail officials, according to Starla Jerome-Robinson, Menlo Park's assistant city manager.

At the meeting, rail officials are expected to present and discuss preliminary information on how high-speed trains could run through Menlo Park and the surrounding area. The rail agency held a similar meeting in Palo Alto on Feb. 9, and is expected to release a formal analysis of the design options for the rail on the Peninsula March 4.

People from neighboring communities, such as Atherton and Palo Alto, are welcome to attend and ask questions, the city said.

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Posted by Martin Engel
a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Feb 13, 2010 at 10:41 am

Having attended the Palo Alto meeting, I don't have much hope for greater clarification at ours on the 19th. "We haven't made any decisions yet." is the standard, stock answer to all our questions. The response pattern appears to be "skillful evasivenes." We will also hear that "We are considering all the proposed alternative alignments, above, at or below grade."

Let me hasten to say that Palo Alto filled their council chambers. We must do the same. It sends a powerful message that it won't be easy to shut us up.

People will bring up a lot of issues that the Parsons-Brinckerhoff/HNTB consultants can't address, such as, why don't they terminate the train in San Jose, or use the Altamont route. The standard answer is that AB3034 requires the train to go to San Francisco, and that the Pacheco Pass route has been approved. We need to understand that what these guys are coming to tell us has to do only with the development of the Caltrain Corridor,period. All the other options that we may be seeking are outside of their responsibility. However, asking about temporary shoo-fly tracks during construction along the corridor, for example, will also result in evasive responses, "Well, we don't know that yet."

We will also learn that the program-level EIS (Central Valley to San Francisco) process to get these reports re-certified will be conducted concurrently with the project-level work that they are undertaking now. That means, a doubling up of time-tables and draft report comment periods.

We are being railroaded!

Why are they doing these meetings? Because we, in Atherton, Menlo Park and Palo Alto are their biggest problem and obstacles. However, it is becoming more apparent that as they develop more detailed plans for the train route through higher density urban environments, they are being challenged by those cities and communities, both in the Bay Area and the LA Basin.

There is an old medical adage: Primum Non Nocere. First Do No Harm. Another term for this is Nonmaleficence. I believe that this is fundamentally what we are asking for. Our task is to make the CHSRA fully aware of this; that they can't make us their victims and demand our "sacrifices for the greater good." Our communities are worth a great deal more than their train.

They don't need "softball" questions. They need to be pressed about how they intend to mitigate
all the harm that their construction and the train will do to our communities.

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Posted by R.GORDON
a resident of another community
on Feb 13, 2010 at 6:09 pm

Mr. Engel has worked FAR too many hours in an "official" sounding way not to sound like some sort of heaven sent angel (engel?)to protect this once really ratty stretch of land which gained prominence once home values started to rise above the million dollar mark and people began to think being rich gave you class.
That has nothing to do with it. Not many of you are invited for "hunt weekends" in the U.K.
Participation in the erection or establishment of a mythological "new life form" which HSR basically is, does not match the fact that there is no room for making money for all of those hugely successful venture capitalists and fallen super millionaires who are now left without a means to exploit this area in order to resucitate their area of expertise.....SANS BANKING or dreams. It is a holdup they would appreciate until the stock market finds roots that aren't made of clay and confederate money with the GREEN-(PLOT)"solution" not catching on quickly enough to make but a few of the next ten people rich again.........the DID lose a LOT OF MONEY without the building and empty dwellings making them bring in a LOT of IRS.
Engel is the scapegoat/spokesman for all of those upset millionaires who are reduced to a comfortable standard of living, BUT does not guarantee a "fruitful conclusion" to the way they will invest what is left and what they can leave to their progeny almost as unexpectedly as they themselves stepped into gold. The HSR will not make them money, but with some imagination, there could be an equitable and balanced way to share the "new" gold which would be the direct result of America having a completely new way of doing business.
What is more, it will rebuild a middle class composed of the ever increasing "cream colored population" which is our population today; who are the hardest working part of America physically and the part which is hurting the most and turning into our homeless.
Has Engel or his followers ONCE mentioned these people?
These meetings are set up for GREED.
Those days are over.

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Posted by More R, Less Carpenter!
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Feb 13, 2010 at 8:23 pm


I'm never quite sure what exactly you're getting at in many of your posts on this forum (or where you're even coming from, for that matter), but you're a heck of a lot more entertaining than Mr. Self-Assured Carpenter - keep up the good work!

Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Feb 14, 2010 at 6:28 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

If you want to be entertained then you certainly should avoid my postings, as humor is not by strong suit.

Like this comment
Posted by Interested
a resident of another community
on Feb 14, 2010 at 6:47 pm

Let me state that I fully support the idea of HSR between Northern and Southern California. Anyone that's ever taken the train from one to the other probably agrees. That said, why should it not terminate in San Jose?

As has been stated there is a perfectly acceptable service provided by CalTrain from SJ to SF. How many millions will it cost to shave half an hour off the journey time.

Has anyone else noticed the Government has no money?

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

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