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Video: Former council members discuss pros, cons of Measure M

The Almanac invited two former Menlo Park councilmen -- John Boyle and Heyward Robinson -- to discuss Measure M, which is on the Nov. 4 ballot.

Measure M, an initiative backed by the grassroots group Save Menlo, would change Menlo Park's downtown/El Camino specific plan to restrict the amount of office space in any individual development within the specific plan area to 100,000 square feet; limit net new office space in that area to 240,820 square feet; and cap overall new, nonresidential development in the area to 474,000 square feet.

The measure would redefine open space to mean only areas no higher than 4 feet off the ground, thereby preventing balconies and rooftop areas from counting as open space.

If passed, the measure would require a city-wide vote to make changes to its regulations as well as to approve projects that would exceed the nonresidential development caps.

Mr. Robinson favors Measure M and Mr. Boyle opposes it.

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Click on the play button to view the video, which runs 76 minutes.

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Video: Former council members discuss pros, cons of Measure M

Uploaded: Fri, Oct 10, 2014, 9:53 am

The Almanac invited two former Menlo Park councilmen -- John Boyle and Heyward Robinson -- to discuss Measure M, which is on the Nov. 4 ballot.

Measure M, an initiative backed by the grassroots group Save Menlo, would change Menlo Park's downtown/El Camino specific plan to restrict the amount of office space in any individual development within the specific plan area to 100,000 square feet; limit net new office space in that area to 240,820 square feet; and cap overall new, nonresidential development in the area to 474,000 square feet.

The measure would redefine open space to mean only areas no higher than 4 feet off the ground, thereby preventing balconies and rooftop areas from counting as open space.

If passed, the measure would require a city-wide vote to make changes to its regulations as well as to approve projects that would exceed the nonresidential development caps.

Mr. Robinson favors Measure M and Mr. Boyle opposes it.

Click on the play button to view the video, which runs 76 minutes.

Comments

interested
Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 10, 2014 at 8:03 pm
interested, Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 10, 2014 at 8:03 pm

Kudos to both of you for showing up and trying to educate and for keeping it classy. Very well done.


Jym Clendenin
Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 11, 2014 at 11:40 am
Jym Clendenin, Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 11, 2014 at 11:40 am

I watched the entire video. I think Robinson and Boyle represented the two sides (for and against M) quite well. I especially appreciate that they were respectful of each other and were willing to agree on many things. So I highly recommend anyone interested in the issues watch this video. And thank you Almanac for sponsoring the video and making it available on the web.


76 minutes?
Menlo Park: other
on Oct 12, 2014 at 5:14 pm
76 minutes?, Menlo Park: other
on Oct 12, 2014 at 5:14 pm

I'm interested in this topic, but 76 minutes? I think the Almanac is being a little optimistic here. Any chance of an abbreviated version of the highlights?


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Atherton: Lindenwood
on Oct 12, 2014 at 5:29 pm
Peter Carpenter, Atherton: Lindenwood
Registered user
on Oct 12, 2014 at 5:29 pm

For a short version just compare these two web sites:

http://menloparkdeservesbetter.nationbuilder.com

http://www.savemenlo.org

Compare the endorsements on each and then read the thoughtful citizens' letters on each.


No Easy Solutions
Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 16, 2014 at 12:12 pm
No Easy Solutions, Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 16, 2014 at 12:12 pm

Listened to the entire video this past weekend and it was a good, respectful debate between the two. Wish there was an better summary from Almanac. Here are the main points that I took away from it

1. Zoning is a complicated subject matter, lots of inter-dependent issues. If voters don't have time to watch/listen to this 76 minute video than it'll be a challenge for them to understand zoning. Thus zoning by ballot initiative is not efficient. Measure M (if it passes) will require zoning by ballot initiatives to make changes to the Downtown Specific Plan (DSP).

2. The DSP needs to have a lower trigger point for developers to provide public benefits, i.e. offsetting traffic. Measure M does not lower the threshold or address it. Council can negotiate with developers and change the threshold.

3. [Personal opinion] Best option is to vote for council members you think will represent your interest. Voting for M won't solve the traffic or trigger point for public benefits.


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