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Portola Valley to buy 'affordable' housing site

Original post made on Sep 4, 2012

The Portola Valley Town Council has agreed to buy a 1.68-acre site for housing that would be affordable to people of moderate incomes. Meanwhile, residents who oppose the project have launched a website.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, September 4, 2012, 8:22 AM

Comments (22)

Posted by Former Wyndham Drive Resident
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 4, 2012 at 12:40 pm

8 affordable housing units were planned for the Blue Oaks parcel which is 2.47 acres. 8-12 affordable housing units are planned for the 900 Portola Rd. parcel which is 1.68 acres. Why will there be more units built at 900 Portola than was planned (and approved) for the Blue Oaks parcel which is about 2/3 larger?

Posted by Dave Boyce
Almanac staff writer
on Sep 4, 2012 at 1:27 pm

Dave Boyce is a registered user.

It may be that the 2.47 acres of that Blue Oaks site involved topography that, in general, was not suitable for development. The town planner, in the story, notes that the site grading necessary at Blue Oaks probably would have raised the price of development too high to make a profit.

Posted by Redfield Flash
a resident of another community
on Sep 4, 2012 at 4:17 pm

I find the oppositions idea to keep Portola Valley "rural" quite laughable. Rather than "Keep PV Rural" it would seem the website should be entitled, "Let Them Eat Cake".

Posted by MeMeMe
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 5, 2012 at 12:18 am

Please, can someone explain why any town has to provide less expensive, and lesser quality, homes for the benefit of people who want to live beyond their means? Is this what we teach our kids? Ask & ye shall receive, courtesy of everyone else who has to pay their fair market costs? Isn't this socialistic?

When, how, & by whom was this mandate enacted? How about an appeal to the Supreme Court?

First we had to pay for food stamps, welfare, adc, now houses. What's next? Discounts on cars & at restaurants?

I want a Ferrari & to eat at Flemming's twice a week. Poor me! Who do I have to beg/lobby/blackmail/threaten/coerce to give me what I want?

If the residents are supposed to work in PV to qualify, do they have to move when they no longer work in PV or retire? What if they get inherit money & become rich? Do they stay?

I hope someone smarter/older than me can explain this. Otherwise I'll get on a waiting list for a job with PV so I can move there on someone else's dime.

Posted by Joseph E. Davis
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Sep 5, 2012 at 12:27 pm

This outrageous policy is brought to you courtesy of the enlightened central planners and certified loons of our single party state.

Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Sep 5, 2012 at 12:48 pm

It takes years to build any kind of housing, you have no income, low low income, low income, middle income, market rate housing and high income and very high income housing. So what is affordable housing.

Posted by Some Guy
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 5, 2012 at 1:48 pm

I just love the elitism oozing from the pores of the residents of PV.
Why don't you pass a law in your town that doesn't allow people below a certain income level to live there?
Seems like that would solve your problem of having to live next to someone who only makes $120k a year.

Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 5, 2012 at 8:37 pm

Some guy:

no one is suggesting that people of lesser means can't live in Portola Valley. What people object to is the socialist nonsense that suggests that others should pay for people of lesser means to live in Portola Valley. If people of lesser means can't live in Portola Valley it's BECAUSE THEY DON'T MAKE ENOUGH MONEY TO DO SO! What is so hard for you to understand about that concept? It is not my responsiblilty nor anyone elses to make it so that someone that can't normally afford to live somewhere so that they can.

Tell you what, let me have half your income so I can live in Atherton. I really would like to live there. I can't afford to because I don't make enough money, but I'm sure in your self rightousness you can see your way clear to give me enough money so I can, right? No? didn't think so. [Portion removed.]

Posted by Hmmm
a resident of another community
on Sep 5, 2012 at 11:51 pm

Hmmm is a registered user.

MV - clearly, it is our responsibility, because it's the law. What I don't understand about this is that people complain & whine about it - but are they doing anything else about it? Or are they only creating elitist, misleading websites? You only complain about your concerns for socialism, but what about their elitist, snotty attitudes & actions? Do you find that more acceptable?

I'm not even saying the above because I think it's the best way to go, either. Nor do I think PV is even the best locale - & my reasons are practical, not having anything to do w/PV's wealth. But as this area becomes more expensive, the "what about ME???!!!!" types come out of the woodwork to complain - but what are they doing about it, if they feel so strongly?

Personally, I'm glad someone's stickin' it to PV - it's about time! Rattle the cages of wealth - it's necessary from time to time.

Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 6, 2012 at 8:06 am


it may be the law, but it's still socialist nonsense. It doesn't surprise me that we would have this type of law in this state. It's laws like this that are helping drive this once great state over teh financial precipice.

Posted by Jennifer
a resident of another community
on Sep 6, 2012 at 11:07 am

Wow, shame on anyone who doesn't support this project. You don't want people of "lessor means" living there? Elitist snobs are what you are.

According to the article, the housing would be restricted to people who work in PV. Is it so bad that your local firefighter or perhaps someone who works for the veterinarian now has an opportunity to live closer to where they work?

You want someone there when your home is on fire or your pet needs medical attention, but you don't want them as your neighbor?

Posted by Wyndham Dr. resident
a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 6, 2012 at 12:50 pm

The residents near the nursery site that are opposed to the proposed development are not opposed to affordable housing. We are opposed to a development that is three or more times the density of our neighborhood. We are upset the Town never brought us into a discussion on a project they have been working on for several years. Try to put yourself in our shoes.

As far as name calling is concerned, the Wyndham Dr circle can be called many things such as beautiful, friendly, and rather normal. Elitist is a description that just does not fit. Drive around and see for yourself.

Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Sep 7, 2012 at 8:22 am

Even the Vet needs a place that is affordable, most of them aren't rolling in money.

Posted by neighbor
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 7, 2012 at 10:10 am

Portola Valley is lucky. As our Woodside and Atherton. The amount of high density housing being foisted on your community is tiny compared to the amount of low-income units that Menlo Park is expected to build.

Too bad our state has so little faith in the free market that got us to this place. And it's become politically incorrect to say anything that might be interpreted as oppressing those who are economically disadvantaged.

Please keep Portola Valley high-income and elite. Many of us who live in Menlo Park are planning to move to your town once ours becomes overrun with junk. (The new units need to sell for under $200,000 to be "affordable," so you can imagine how deluxe they will be.)

Posted by Jennifer
a resident of another community
on Sep 7, 2012 at 11:11 am

To "neighbor", if you don't want high density housing or the people who come with it, I suggest you move out to the mountains or desert where you can purchase acres and acres of land, never to be surrounded by "junk".

The people of Wyndham Drive may not be elitist, but you sure are. As someone who was fortunate enough to be raised in a high income zipcode, I know you are the last type of person I would want as a neighbor.

Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Sep 7, 2012 at 12:08 pm

Free Market, you can live where they are afforable homes, etc and more etc. At the same time you fought for open space, to preserve your views in the foothills and housing in high density near the freeways. If is so funny when did 10 or 20 homes on a few acres become high density.

Posted by Joseph E. Davis
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Sep 7, 2012 at 3:42 pm

Why should a bunch of irresponsible charismatic clowns in Sacramento decide how many houses a city should build? Wouldn't that be better for each city to decide based on local knowledge and preferences? Then citizens can choose what city best matches them...

Ah forget it, it makes too much sense for California! Bring on the central planners!

Posted by member
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Sep 9, 2012 at 7:37 am

gasp...Oh my goodness...What next, bicycles on Portola town trails?

Posted by neighbor
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 9, 2012 at 2:01 pm

Let's not clutter the real issue with absurdities, shall we?

Who should plan our communities? The people who live in them, or lobbyists in Sacramento? Strip aside the rhetoric, and that's the question. Sticking your head in the sand will not help.

Posted by Maria
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 19, 2012 at 10:32 pm

It's fine when I'm working in your house taking care of your children or elderly parent for wages you could not live off of. Yet, it's a problem for me to live in your neck of the woods. HYPOCRITES OF PV! Then some of you have the nerves to believe in a higher power. How will twelve homes effect your living? I came to this county looking for a better life .

Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 20, 2012 at 6:53 am


it's wonderful you came to this country to make a better life. This country affords everyone great opportunities to do just that, but you have to EARN it. We all do. No one owes you a better place to live than you can afford.

Posted by Name hidden
a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle

on Sep 16, 2017 at 9:00 am

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