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Letter: What Measure M will mean for Menlo

Original post made on Sep 9, 2014

As a member of the Planning Commission for six years and an active participant in the specific plan process, I am greatly concerned about the misinformation I'm hearing about Measure M. Residents may not truly understand what it will mean for Menlo Park.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, September 10, 2014, 12:00 AM

Comments (60)

Posted by George C Fisher
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 9, 2014 at 1:42 pm



These statements are factually incorrect.

1. Measure M limits sets reasonable limits for office space in the El Camino District. Measure M does not allow big box retail or medical offices, only the Specific Plan does. In any event any big box retailer would be foolish to attempt a store on El Camino with no practical access. Medical offices are included in the office space limitations of Measure M and even more limited by City Council amendments to the Specific Plan.

2. Measure M opens up opportunities for retail and restaurants and hotels, all of which generate vibrancy, as well as sales and transit occupancy taxes, of which office space generates nothing.

3. Continued Blight is a scare tactic pure and simple. Look at the new development on El Camino in the last couple of years and in progress. Office Parks are not a required remedy, in any event.

4. Measure M does not allow ballot box decisions on development projects, only to raise the express maximum 30 year Specific Plan limits on non residential development, and the 240,820 square feet of office space over 30 years specifically and expressly studied in the Specific Plan Environmental Impact Report and Fiscal Impact Analysis.

5. Unintended consequences from Measure M are a myth. There are more unintended consequences from the city’s trust in developers during the specific Plan process and in the secret unvetted subcommittee agreement between the City and Stanford, which specifically cut out participation by the neighborhood residents appointed to negotiate and participate. The city gave away development rights for a purported promise of a contribution to infrastructure depending upon future negotiations, apparently not involving the quantity of office space. I understand another subcommittee is now negotiating again, in secret.

6. Its time for transparency, openness, and fulfillment of the public’s goals for living in Menlo Park.


Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 9, 2014 at 1:59 pm

Menlo Voter is a registered user.

George:

sorry, but you are factually incorrect or [portion deleted - please discuss the topic not your opinion of a poster.]

Measure M doesn't allow ballot box decisions on development projects. That's right, but that's not what opponents are claiming. But you know that don't you? What we've been claiming is that changes to the DSP and it's definitions will require voter approval. Definitely not as you have claimed. The FACT is that any change requires voter approval.

Transparency and openness occurred over the course of six years in the creation of the DSP. [portion deleted.]

Continued blight is no scare tactic. Those temporary chain link fences didn't change from temporary to permanent by themselves. And there's a reason they were changed. No development is going to happen on that property for a good long while.

Measure M will create more traffic and not less. Your contention that medical offices which generate more traffic than regular office CANNOT be modified by the city council. Nothing can be modified without a vote. [portion deleted.]

Bottom line is that measure M was created to serve the interests of a very small minority who used lies, scare tactics and paid signature collection to get their measure on the ballot. Talk about a lack of transparency.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 9, 2014 at 2:00 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Fisher does not seem to understand that by restricting certain things Measure M encourages other things. Measure M is nowhere near as Fisher would like you to believe.

For example, imagine that you are an owner of two adjacent parcels on ECR. Measure M would limit what you could do if you combined those parcels in order to propose an integrated development with a single access to ECR. So what you would do would be to propose two distinctly different projects - one for each parcel - with totally different designs and each with its own ECR access.

For example, you own a small parcel which is currently built out to the side lot lines as is customary and permitted in parts the Specific Plan area. If your building was destroyed by fire or an earthquake Measure M's zany definition of Open Space would require you to set the replacement building back from the side lot lines - so you simply decide not to rebuild.

The list of such poor and adverse consequences of this poorly worded and totally unvetted initiative goes on and on.

It certainly is time for transparency, openness, and fulfillment of the public's goals for living in Menlo Park and Measure M does none of these. No drafts for public comment, no EIR, no traffic study of the revised incentives.

Measure M is a huge Mistake. M NO


Posted by George C Fisher
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 9, 2014 at 2:23 pm


I don't see anything restricting the City council from limiting medical offices further. No definitions or increase of maximum non residential limits are involved. In any event, I was referring to the fact that the city council has already amended the specific plan to limit medical office space. The statement that nothing can be modified if referring to the specific plan is incorrect. The only limitations on modifications are those expressly stated in Exhibit M.

Also Measure M limits office space traffic. Under the City's Circulation System Assessment (CSA) document, 3 out of every 4 office space traffic generated from El Camino need to cut through the city to reach I 280, US 101, SR 84 or the Alameda/Junipero Serra. This traffic, plus office space traffic traveling mainly at AM and PM peak congestion hours mean more traffic through the neighborhoods. Just trip generation numbers from books do not mean impacts. Impacts result under the city's TIA as specified by intersection delays or increases in roadway volumes from trip distributions according to the CSA and taken by drivers trying to save time, which are trip assignments. These are all being studied and explained in the Stanford Cut Through analysis which has not yet been publicly released by the City



Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 9, 2014 at 2:34 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

" The only limitations on modifications are those expressly stated in Exhibit M. "

Yes and those include no less than 9 definitions "hereby adopted by the voters" and numerous other limitations which can ONLY be changed by a city wide vote.

Measure M is an attack on the good governance of the elected City Council and the years long city wide OPEN process that lead to the Specific Plan and which would, absent Measure M, lead to the continual improvement of the Specific Plan.

Measure M is a Mistake.

M NO


Posted by Menlo needs M
a resident of Menlo Park: South of Seminary/Vintage Oaks
on Sep 9, 2014 at 3:00 pm

I would expect more from the author of this letter, a member of the Menlo Park Planning Commission.
1. Was the author aware that the Council in November 2013 limited medical office development to 30% of a development's project? Measure M does not cut in half commercial development. It reduces office development to 100,000 SF for each individual project. It just happens that this reduction for both Stanford and Greenwash developments brings the office from about 200,000 SF for each to 100,000 SF each. In another development proposal for a smaller parcel, for example if the office was less than 100,000 SF, it is not "cut in half." Yes, the Specific Plan called for mixed use but what Stanford and Greenwash propose is the tiniest of retail. 10,000 SF of retail out of 400,000 SF on Stanford's project and 23,000 SF out of 400,000 SF for Greenwash. And that developer has stated that retail may not work for them and may be converted to even more office. So, it's dishonest to keep calling either of these developments "mixed use."

2. Blight? Wrong. These are vacant lots. Stanford kept them vacant because the auto dealers had paid the leases upfront. Vacant lots were kept vacant while the property owners carefully manipulated the Specific Plan so that they could get overly generous floor area ratios from the naive council. And they did.

3. Ballot Box elections? The only time the Council will have to ask the residents to vote is if the Council wants to exceed the Specific Plan's caps on office and non-residential development. The plan called for 240,800 SF of office development for the next 30 years. ooops! Stanford and Greenwash want to build over 400,000 SF of office right now. Measure M supports the Specific Plan's projections and goals. Sorry that Ms. Ferrick, a Planning Commissioner, does not.

I understand Ms. Ferrick's being defensive about the Specific Plan. She sat through many boring meetings while staff threw out confusing information. The only time residents thought anyone was listening to them was during the visioning meetings in 2007-2008. We should have known that our ideas would be ignored. The 12 goals are still intact and when reviewing them against the first 2 massive developments being proposed on El Camino Real, both projects fail. The both get a big F. Vote Yes on Measure M. Vote for the people who live here, not for the developers.


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 9, 2014 at 3:18 pm

Katie knows better and should be ashamed for repeating nonsense.

Measure M does not require voter approval for anything other than resetting the Specific Plan's Maximum Buildout for non-residential square feet, overall office buildout (same as in the EIR) and per-project office (affects only 3 sites: Stanford, Greenhart, Big 5 shopping center). The limits were supposed to last for 30 years! The Open Space definition is modified to eliminate counting of balconies and upper level decks for project open space.
EVERYTHING ELSE, including big box, amount of medical, setbacks, amount of required open space are in the total control of city council.


Posted by Henry Riggs
a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
on Sep 9, 2014 at 3:29 pm

George, you have repeated the same false "facts" for over a year - thats why council had to pay 165,000 for an analysis of your badly written Measure M. You don't understand development and don't listen to those who do. Your comments above make that too clear.
1. If there are four kinds of fruit on the table and Patti take one away, you'd better like the other three.
2. Taking away the income producing part of a project does not get more loss-leaders built.
3. It takes 2-3 years to re-program, re-design and go through "architectural control" hearings for a major project (duh)
4. See three pieces of fruit, above.
5. The fire station is not a myth, lawsuits are not a myth, Walmart is not a myth, tax-exempt ;university use is not a myth.
6. OK, I'll agree here - fulfilling the publics goal - renewal - and a little honesty from "save menlo" would help a lot.


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 9, 2014 at 4:11 pm

Oh Henry and Katie - you know full well that the Specific Plan doubled development possible. You know full well that projects using the old rules got built as the recession faded away. Some of those aren't fully inhabited yet, but they appear viable - at half what the Plan allows. You know full well that Measure M still leaves a lot of office for developers to build. In fact, the per-project limits only affect 3 sites. You know full well that the retail, office, and housing markets are hot.
You know full well that there are still plenty of types of fruits left in the basket. Measure M ensures a more healthy mix of them for the residential community, and the vision our community created.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 9, 2014 at 4:38 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Measure M does not require voter approval for anything other than resetting the Specific Plan's Maximum Buildout for non-residential square feet, overall office buildout (same as in the EIR) and per-project office (affects only 3 sites: Stanford, Greenhart, Big 5 shopping center)."

Non fact checker needs to read Measure M. There are no less than 9 definitions "hereby adopted by the voters" and numerous other limitations which can ONLY be changed by a city wide vote.

Measure M supporters would have the voters believe that the measure is a benign attempt to fine tune the years of public dialogue and transparency that went into the Specific Plan - don't be fooled, Measure M is a bizarre collection of land mines that will enable anyone to stop any project they wish:
"Consistent with the Planning and Zoning Law and applicable case law, the City shall not adopt any other new provisions or amendments to the Policy Planning Documents that would be inconsistent with or FRUSTRATE the implementation of the voter-adopted development standards and definitions set forth in Section 3, above, absent voter approval of a conforming amendment to those voter-adopted provisions.
PRIORITY.
After this measure becomes effective, its provision shall PREVAIL OVER AND SUPERSEDE all provisions of the municipal code, ordinances, resolutions, and administrative policies of the City of Menlo Park which are inferior to the Planning Policy Documents and in conflict with any provisions of this measure. "

If Measure M passes anybody could invoke the FRUSTRATE clause regarding any project and only a judge or a city wide election could resolve the challenge.

Measure M is a Mistake.

M NO


Posted by Susanne Chang
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 9, 2014 at 9:33 pm

My comment is not about Measure M but about a building about to be torn down. It is the one remaining building of Menlo Park's " Chinatown." Yes there was one! If you read the book Beyond the Gate: The history of Menlo Park. It was only one street,where Foster's Freeze is located. It was the only between San Jose to San Francisco. Very sad!


Posted by Katie Ferrick
a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
on Sep 10, 2014 at 9:00 am

Hi all,
I don't write on this online forum often because it seems to get so negative so quickly, with little or no accountability due to anonymity. But that's a topic for another day.

I do want to address a couple points made about my letter.

Most importantly, I want to express that no matter how anyone feels about every detail of the Specific Plan, we can continue to refine and update if any issues emerge because reviews are built in to the plan. Measure M does not allow updates or amendments and specifically demands changes by voters only. (See page 9, Section 4 of the initiative, "No Amendments or repeal without voter approval.")

Specifically, I'd like to address Mr. Fisher's comments at the very top of this thread point by point:

1) I disagree that Measure M sets 'reasonable limits' for office space. Being too prescriptive about what is not allowed leaves developers with limited choices for what they can build and turns away potential small business from locating here if they know they cannot grow or evolve into uses that fall under "commercial office" category.
The restrictions completely change the economics of the projects and incentives higher traffic uses. While you are correct that Medical office is part of "office" under the proposed measure M, the measure incentives land owners to unbundle the parcels and build out their max office on separate parcels rather the a comprehensive development with public amenities like plazas and bike lanes.

2) The Specific Plan already has great opportunities for retail, restaurants, and vibrancy. That is one of the stated goals of the plan. Current project proposals include retail, restaurant, and hotel. I think there is a myth out there that space for these items are not in the plan when, in fact, they are.

3) Extended blight is not a scare tactic. In the recent Planning Commission public study session on the Greenheart project, the developer stated that if Measure M passes, they would have to go back to the drawing board (literally) and rethink the entire project. That is approximately a two year process at best to redesign, restudy, resubmit, and wind their way through the entitlement process. Two or more years of chained up lots is extending the blight.

4) Measure M does require ballot box changes to the plan. Please see page 9 section 4 of the Initiative that states very clearly: "No Amendments or repeal without voter approval." This disadvantages small business and smaller property owners to lodge a public vote to earn the right to grow their business in town. It will help them decide to move elsewhere.

5) Agree! Transparency is critical here. I encourage everyone to please read all the documents related to the plan, the consultant report, and the initiative on the city's website www.menlopark.org or on the No on M website at menloparkdeservesbetter.org. The more people are informed, the better.


Posted by Tunbridge Wells
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 10, 2014 at 11:59 am

Tunbridge Wells is a registered user.

Kudos to Katie Ferrick. She is correct that Measure M will handcuff the city.

Traffic on El Camino is going to be bad no matter what we do in Menlo Park. It's already bad now, with big vacant lots. Development decisions in Palo Alto, Redwood City and Mountain View will have enormous impact on traffic in Menlo Park, and Measure M cannot do anything about what neighboring towns do. But Measure M can take bad traffic situation and make it worse, by allowing for medical offices and big box retail.

Zoning by ballot measure is a bad idea, no matter how well the ballot measure is written. Measure M is not well-written. It is a minefield of unintended consequences.


Posted by Mike G
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 10, 2014 at 12:20 pm

Save Menlo is a vocal minority using misinformation in an attempt to derail an open public process lasting 5+ years. Facts are out there, the process has been vetted and just because a few didn't get what they want doesn't mean the rest of the 100's or 1,000's of people providing input should be silenced or handcuffed.

The public process worked and the town is ready to proceed in a positive well thought manner. Measure M is wrong for Menlo Park, pure and simple! It's time we revitalize our town and get rid of the blight on El Camino and adjoining areas.

Thank you Katie, Henry, thank you planning commissioners (past and present), thank you town, thank you council for allowing the citizens of Menlo Park to have a voice for the past 5+ years. I hope a vocal minority doesn't thwart all the hard work done by so many.

Vote NO on Measure M!!!


Posted by morris brown
a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Sep 10, 2014 at 12:36 pm

Katie in her reply above states,

“we can continue to refine and update if any issues emerge because reviews are built in to the plan”.

This is all very true, but the history of the Specific Plan, has shown that Council on several occasions, during reviews has just refused to make needed changes. This is precisely the reason why the initiative was started, which has resulted in Measure M now appearing on the November ballot. The facts are Council just is not listening.

The Specific Plan is just not working, plain and simple. It was supposed to support the goals that were so explicitly laid out during the Visioning process. Instead, most of these goals were abandoned, when a new consultant was hired, a consultant who at the same time was working for Stanford, hardly impartial.

Katie, was a key member of the Menlo Park Tomorrow referendum team from about 8 years ago, which managed to gather enough signatures, to qualify for the ballot, but which in the end, resulted in a compromise project for the Derry lands. I find her change in attitude towards dense development pretty amazing. Indeed, her 6 years on the planning commission have shown her, in general, to be in sympathy with the views of those championed by Henry Riggs, Mickie Winkler and Lee Duboc; a complete change in attitude from when she participated in the Derry referendum.

Her now advocating for a project like the Greenheart project, which is well over two times the density of the Derry project reveals a complete change in her attitude for what is reasonable development, to one of just letting the developers build higher and denser.

Hopefully in November, Menlo Park voters, will take heed to the advice of 9 former Mayors of Menlo Park, ( I gather the number has just risen to 10), and support Measure M.

Morris Brown
Stone Pine Lane
Leader of the Derry Referendum


Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 10, 2014 at 12:45 pm

Menlo Voter is a registered user.

"This is all very true, but the history of the Specific Plan, has shown that Council on several occasions, during reviews has just refused to make needed changes."

Needed changes in your opinion and the opinion of a small minority of people that didn't get their way in the DSP process and are now throwing a tantrum.

That's the thing about compromise Morris, everyone doesn't get everything they want or have things the way THEY think they should be. Your opinion carries as much weight as everyone else's and in the end compromises get made. That's the DSP.

Measure M is a mistake.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 10, 2014 at 12:47 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"the history of the Specific Plan, has shown that Council on several occasions, during reviews has just refused to make needed changes."

No, the council listened to each of the concerns raised, made some changes and declined to make other changes. That is the way that the process is supposed to work.

The problem is that a small group of people were not able to protect their own special interests.

Interested readers should note:

1 - Save Menlo petitioned the City and Stanford to change Stanford's original proposal
2 - Stanford made all the changes that Save Menlo requested
3 - Save Menlo demanded an early review of the Specific Plan
4 - The Council did an early review of the Specific Plan
5 - Save Menlo then filed a potion for an initiative
6 - Before deciding which position to take on the proposed initiative the Council decided have an external review of the initiative
7 - Save Menlo demanded that the external review be conducted by someone with no prior involvement with either Menlo Park, the Specific Plan or Stanford
8 - The Council selected a consultant who had no prior involvement with either Menlo Park, the Specific Plan or Stanford
9 - The consultant also dismissed its original traffic expert because the consultant had had a previous interaction with Stanford
10 - the consultant submitted her report to the Council
11 - Save Menlo cried foul because they did not like the consultant's report
12 - The council asked the consultant to respond to the Save Menlo concerns
13 - the consultant submitted its response to the concerns raised by Save Menlo

So please tell me what exactly it would take to make Save Menlo happy???


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 10, 2014 at 4:46 pm

Don't be fooled. The council remains in control of virtually every aspect of the 350+ page specific plan.

Measure M affects the definition of what counts as project open space, and requires voter agreement for resetting the Plan's non-residential development cap (supposed to last 30 years), the amount of overall office development assumed in the Plan's EIR, and to change the maximum amount of office per project (Measure M affects three sites: greenheart, stanford, big 5 shopping center). Katie is flat out wrong to imply anything more, and certainly not any impacts on smaller property owners.

The council can manage whether big box is allowed or whether there is too much medical. The council can decide if the amount of open space is too much or too little.


Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 10, 2014 at 4:48 pm

fact checker:

that's simply not factual. Please provide the part of the measure and DSP that support your statements. Repeating a lie isn't going to make it true.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 10, 2014 at 5:11 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Fact checker - PLEASE read Measure M. There are no less than 9 definitions "hereby adopted by the voters" and numerous other limitations which can ONLY be changed by a city wide vote.

Measure M supporters would have the voters believe that the measure is a benign attempt to fine tune the years of public dialogue and transparency that went into the Specific Plan - don't be fooled, Measure M is a bizarre collection of land mines that will enable anyone to stop any project they wish:
"Consistent with the Planning and Zoning Law and applicable case law, the City shall not adopt any other new provisions or amendments to the Policy Planning Documents that would be inconsistent with or FRUSTRATE the implementation of the voter-adopted development standards and definitions set forth in Section 3, above, absent voter approval of a conforming amendment to those voter-adopted provisions.
PRIORITY.
After this measure becomes effective, its provision shall PREVAIL OVER AND SUPERSEDE all provisions of the municipal code, ordinances, resolutions, and administrative policies of the City of Menlo Park which are inferior to the Planning Policy Documents and in conflict with any provisions of this measure. "

If Measure M passes anybody could invoke the FRUSTRATE clause regarding any project and only a judge or a city wide election could resolve the challenge.

Measure M is a Mistake.

And its proponent continue to refuse to cite the language of Measure M - sort of like a relative that they really don't want to introduce to their friends.


Posted by Politico Park
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 10, 2014 at 7:51 pm

I don't agree with her on every issue, but Katie has always impressed me as a genuinely kind, patient person, in a role that doesn't always encourage that! Unlike some people, when things get heated she doesn't make it personal, and I'd for sure say she's been consistent. A lot of people who signed or helped with the Derry petition didn't necessarily object to that kind of project, but wanted to see the vision come out of public workshops and studies and tons of deliberation- which is EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENED.

With these local votes, the facts definitely matter, but so do personal relationships and persuasiveness. I will let you be the judge for yourselves, but I can see a clear difference between "No on M" crew like Katie, Peter Ohtaki, Fran Dehn, and Cat Carlton vs. the "Yes on M" crew like Morris Brown, Patti Fry, Chuck Bernstein, and Cherie Zaslawsky. Guess we'll see, tho!


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 11, 2014 at 8:02 am

Measure M changes very little in the plan. The council remains in control of virtually everything except what counts as project open space, and what the overall non-residential and office limits are (deliberately these are the exact same numbers as evaluated in the Plan's environmental impact report).

Katie is simply mistaken that the Measure does more than that. The whole reason for the Measure is to ensure that the community's vision can come to fruition, not a bunch of big office buildings that were never, ever part of the vision for downtown. These would be dead at night and on weekends - a far cry from the vibrancy and small town character the community wants. These would add rush hour congestion and neighborhood cut-through - endangering pedestrians, bikers, and small children.
Katie is wrong that there would be enough space left for the Plan's balanced growth -- subtract from 474,000 SF the net 350,000 SF of office for just these 2 big projects and tell us where there is remaining space for 380 hotel rooms and 91,800 SF of retail. And for replacing the additional 60,000 SF of existing/approved retail being displaced.

Measure M offers a choice between the community's small town vision and the urbanized vision of developers and current council members.


Posted by Momentum Swing
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 11, 2014 at 8:10 am

With the announcement of 13 current former Mayors and Vice Mayors opposing Measure M,
with the Democratic Party refusing to endorse Measure M supporters Kelly Fergusson and Kristin Duriseti,
and with all of the empty responses to Katie Ferrick's letter...it's pretty clear to see the momentum has strongly swung in favor of the oppose Measure M camp, and just when the voters are starting to make decisions.


Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 11, 2014 at 8:22 am

Menlo Voter is a registered user.

fact checker:

again I ask, please provide the language in the measure and the DSP that supports your contention. You can't can you? The measure takes control AWAY from the council. Any changes to the definitions and boundaries requires a VOTE. What is so hard to understand about that?


Posted by Eminent Domain
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 11, 2014 at 8:31 am

How about developing Atherton instead of Menlo Park? Government could just rezone, take land - including mansions - pay little and transfer the land to Stanford or some other developer. And don't forget to add "affordable housing" for the hired help.


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 11, 2014 at 8:47 am

What is so hard to understand about the Measure only affecting open space definition, and not all the other definitions and regulations in the plan?

The Measure puts final approval in voters hands over the total amount of office and non-residential development, the amount of office on the largest sites, and the definition of project open space. This council refused to address concerns about these. This council refuses to support the community vision that the specific plan was supposed to produce, instead supporting large office buildings in the middle of our town. That is THEIR dream and developers' dream, not our community vision.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 11, 2014 at 9:49 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"What is so hard to understand about the Measure only affecting open space definition, and not all the other definitions and regulations in the plan? "

This is absolute proof that fact checker either has not read Measure M or is intentionally lying.

Here is the exact language from Measure M that freezes NINE definitions:
"Section 3. ECR SPECIFIC PLAN AREA VOTER-ADOPTED DEVELOPMENT DEFINITIONS AND STANDARDS.

3.1. ECR SPECIFIC PLAN AREA DEFINED. When referring to the “ECR Specific Plan Area,” this initiative measure is referring to the bounded area within the Vision Plan Area Map located at Page 2, Figure I, of the El Camino Real/Downtown Vision Plan, accepted by the Menlo Park city Council on July 15, 2008, which is attached as Exhibit 1 to this measure and hereby adopted by the voters as an integral part of this initiative measure.
1
3.2. OPEN SPACE DEFINITIONS AND STANDARDS; ABOVE GROUND LEVEL OPEN SPACE EXCLUDED FROM CALCULATIONS OF MINIMUM OPEN SPACE REQUIREMENTS FOR DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS WITHIN THE ECR SPECIFIC PLAN AREA.
3.2.1. As adopted on July 12, 2012, the ECR Specific Plan’s Appendix includes the following definition of “Open Space”: “The portion of the building site that is open, unobstructed and unoccupied, and otherwise preserved from development, and used for public or private use, including plazas, parks, walkways, landscaping, patios and balconies. It is inclusive of Common Outdoor Open Space, Private Open Space and Public Open Space as defined in this glossary. It is typically located at ground level, though it includes open space atop a podium, if provided, and upper story balconies. Open space is also land that is essentially unimproved and devoted to the conservation of natural resources.” The foregoing definition is hereby amended, restated and adopted by the voters to instead read: “The portion of the building site that is open, unobstructed and unoccupied, and otherwise preserved from development, and used for public or private use, including plazas, parks, walkways, landscaping, patios, balconies, and roof decks. It is inclusive of Common Outdoor Open Space, Private Open Space and Public Open Space as defined in this glossary. Open space up to 4 feet in height associated with ground floor level development or atop a podium up to 4 feet high, if provided, shall count toward the minimum open space requirement for proposed development. Open space greater than 4 feet in height, whether associated with upper story balconies, patios or roof decks, or atop a podium, if provided, shall not count toward the minimum open space requirement for proposed development. Open space is also land that is essentially unimproved and devoted to the conservation of natural resources.”
3.2.2. As adopted on July 12, 2012, the ECR Specific Plan’s Appendix includes the following definition of “Private Open Space”: “An area connected or immediately adjacent to a dwelling unit. The space can be a balcony, porch, ground or above grade patio or roof deck used exclusively by the occupants of the dwelling unit and their guests.” The foregoing definition is hereby adopted by the voters.
3.2.3. As adopted on July 12, 2012, the ECR Specific Plan’s Appendix includes the following definition of “Common Outdoor Open Space”: “Usable outdoor space commonly accessible to all residents and users of the building for the purpose of passive or
active recreation.” The foregoing definition is hereby adopted by the voters.
3.2.4. As adopted on July 12, 2012, ECR Specific Plan Standard E.3.6.01 states: “Residential developments or Mixed Use developments with residential use shall have a minimum of 100 square feet of open space per unit created as common open space or a minimum of 80 square feet of open space per unit created as private open space, where private open space shall have a minimum dimension of 6 feet by 6 feet. In case of a mix of private and common open space, such common open space shall be provided at a ratio equal to 1.25 square feet for each one square foot of private open space that is not provided.” The foregoing standard is hereby adopted by the voters.
3.2.5. As adopted on July 12, 2012, ECR Specific Plan Standard E.3.6.02 states: “Residential open space (whether in common or private areas) and accessible open space above parking podiums up to 16 feet high shall count towards the minimum open space requirement for the development.” The foregoing Standard is hereby amended, restated and adopted by the voters to instead read: “Ground floor open space up to 4 feet high (whether in common or private areas) and accessible open space above parking podiums up to 4 feet high shall count towards the minimum open space requirement for the development. Open space exceeding 4 feet in height (regardless of whether in common or private areas or associated with podiums) shall not count towards the minimum open space requirement for the development.”
3.2.6. After this measure becomes effective, Tables E6, E7, E8, E9, E10, E11, E12, E13, E14, E15, in the ECR Specific Plan, which, as adopted on July 12, 2012, state that “residential open space, whether in common or private areas, shall count toward the minimum open space requirement for the development” are each hereby amended, restated and adopted by the voters to instead read at the places where the foregoing statement appears: “only ground floor level residential open space in common or private areas up to 4 feet high and accessible open space above parking podiums up to 4 feet high shall count toward the minimum open space requirement for the development; residential open space in common or private areas exceeding 4 feet in height and open space above parking podiums exceeding 4 feet in height shall not.”
3.3. OFFICE SPACE DEFINED; MAXIMUM OFFICE SPACE ALLOWED FOR INDIVIDUAL OR PHASED DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS WITHIN THE ECR SPECIFIC PLAN AREA.
3.3.1. As adopted on July 12, 2012, the ECR Specific Plan’s Appendix includes the following Commercial Use Classification for “Offices, Business and Professional”: “Offices of firms or organizations providing professional, executive, management, or administrative services, such as accounting, advertising, architectural, computer software design, engineering, graphic design, insurance, interior design, investment, and legal offices. This classification excludes hospitals, banks, and savings and loan associations.” The foregoing Commercial Use Classification is hereby adopted by the voters.
3.3.2. As adopted on July 12, 2012, the ECR Specific Plan’s Appendix includes the following Commercial Use Classification for “Offices, Medical and Dental”: “Offices for a physician, dentist, or chiropractor, including medical/dental laboratories incidental to the medical office use. This classification excludes medical marijuana dispensing facilities, as defined in the California Health and Safety Code.” The foregoing Commercial Use Classification is hereby adopted by the voters.
3.3.3. As adopted on July 12, 2012, the ECR Specific Plan’s Appendix includes the following Commercial Use Classification for “Banks and Other Financial Institutions”: “Financial institutions providing retail banking services. This classification includes only those institutions engaged in the on-site circulation of money, including credit unions.” The foregoing Commercial Use Classification is hereby adopted by the voters.
3.3.4. The foregoing, voter-adopted Commercial Use Classifications are hereby collectively referred to in this measure as “Office Space.”
"3.3.6. For purposes of this provision, all phases of a multi-phased project proposal shall be collectively considered an individual project."

And all of these definitions are FROZEN for all time unless changed by a city wide vote:
"4.1.
NO AMENDMENTS OR REPEAL WITHOUT VOTER APPROVAL.
Except for as provided at Section 3.4.4 above regarding the City’s ability to approve without voter ratification an amendment to the Specific Plan to accommodate development proposals that would call for an increase in the allowable number of residential units under the Specific Plan, the voter- adopted development standards AND DEFINITIONS set forth in Section 3, above, may be repealed or amended only by a majority vote of the electorate of the City of Menlo Park voting “YES” on a ballot measure proposing such repeal or amendment at a regular or special election. The entire text of the proposed definition or standard to be repealed, or the amendment proposed to any such definition or standard, shall be included in the sample ballot materials mailed to registered voters prior to any such election."

Why do the proponents of Measure M continue to lie about what THEIR Measure actually says?


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 11, 2014 at 11:39 am

Remember that staff interprets definitions and has considerable flexibility to do so according to provisions in the Specific Plan. And remember that the reason for the definitions is to indicate what is counted. That's it.

A far bigger deal is that the council approved zoning that doubles, yes doubles, what can be built on most properties on El Camino and didn't ensure that these would provide balanced mix of uses. No one asked for large office buildings and this council refused to modify the plan when it became clear there are loopholes that allow them. So much for all the years and millions of dollars that created a plan that is just bait and switch.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 11, 2014 at 11:54 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Remember that staff interprets definitions and has considerable flexibility to do so according to provisions in the Specific Plan. "

Absolutely not true - READ MEASURE M Section 3 and Section 4.

"the voter- adopted development standards and DEFINITIONS set forth in Section 3, above, may be repealed or amended ONLY by a majority vote of the electorate of the City of Menlo Park voting “YES” on a ballot measure proposing such repeal or amendment at a regular or special election."
****************************
"And remember that the reason for the definitions is to indicate what is counted. That's it."

Absolutely not true - READ MEASURE M Section 3 and Section 4 - there is NOTHING here that limits these definitions to indicate what is counted.

"the voter- adopted development standards and DEFINITIONS set forth in Section 3, above, may be repealed or amended ONLY by a majority vote of the electorate of the City of Menlo Park voting “YES” on a ballot measure proposing such repeal or amendment at a regular or special election."

Measure M is a Mistake and lying about what is SAYS will not change that fact. However, the fact that supporters of Measure M have to lie about what it says shows how indefensible is the poorly worded and unvetted text of this 12 page initiative.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 11, 2014 at 11:57 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"No one asked for large office buildings"

And the Specific Plan only permits 50% of the FAR of the ECR sites to be office buildings - the other 50% MUST be residential and or retail.


Measure M is a Mistake because the people who wrote it and support it neither understand the Specific Plan and the balance which it requires or the damaged that the poorly worded misdirection of Measure M will do.


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 11, 2014 at 1:06 pm

NO - the Specific Plan does not mean that office is only 50% of what is developed. The Sierra Club said the maximum office ought to be 20% of a project in order to achieve appropriate balance. That is the percentage assumed in the Plan's EIR, too.

Peter misleads. There is no requirement for anything else but office to be built. A developer can proposed the maximum amount of office and stop. The only requirement for retail in the entire Plan area is 10,000 Sf on Stanford's site and that is all Stanford has proposed. That is 2% of their entire project.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 11, 2014 at 1:15 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"NO - the Specific Plan does not mean that office is only 50% of what is developed. "

The Specific Plan states that only 50% of the FAR for ECR-SE may be offices and the latest Stanford proposal for 500 ECR would be LESS than 50% office space and NO medical offices.

See Table E9. Development Standards for El Camino Real South-East (ECR SE) District

So called fact checker continues to play with the truth.

Measure M is a Mistake and even its supporters do not understand Measure M.


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 11, 2014 at 2:25 pm

The truth is that up to 50% of FAR can be office BUT that does not at all mean that only 50% of a development IS office. 100% of a project can be office if the developer chooses not to develop to the maximum allowed. That does happen, and can happen. After all, the council doubled the amount of development that was previously allowed (pre-July 2012).

Peter knows better and continues to want to fool you.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 11, 2014 at 2:46 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"100% of a project can be office if the developer chooses not to develop to the maximum allowed" Absolutely brilliant !! That is EXACTLY what the Specific Plan allows.

Factless checker continues to try to play with the truth.

Measure M is simply based on lies, lies, lies.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 11, 2014 at 2:51 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Can anyone suggest a way to deal with posters who repeatedly post untruths, are called on it and then try to squirm out by posting half truths?

What our community needs is a good independent journalist who publishes an unbiased analysis of Measure M and of all of the statements made on its behalf.

It is clear that the Measure M has chosen not only ignorance but deceit as its allies and is hoping for a low turnout election of its true believers. That will not happen.


Posted by censor
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 11, 2014 at 4:45 pm

yes, my suggestion would be to censor yourself, Peter.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 11, 2014 at 4:48 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Oh, the anonymous voice of linfield oaks cries out from the darkness - and then runs away.

These folks are terrified of an honest, fact based debate.


Posted by Censor
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 11, 2014 at 8:04 pm

Fact based debate? Sorry, we're just going to have to disagree on the "facts" - yours seem to be coming from the developer and are bogus.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 11, 2014 at 9:21 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Censor - Until you put your facts on the table there can be no dialogue - my facts have already been presented.

But then you are unknown and have nothing at risk so you can simply slink away from the facts.


Posted by Katie Ferrick
a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
on Sep 13, 2014 at 6:21 pm

I have no doubt that all involved want the best for Menlo Park. I believe the intentions of the initiative were meant to be positive, however, the impact analysis and traffic studies all point to Measure M being quite flawed.

I believe we all want a vibrant downtown and El Camino Real with thriving local shops, restaurants, plazas, and bike/ped improvements. Unfortunately, Measure M will not get us those things according to the impartial impact analysis.

Quoting the Impact report: "Voter approval of the Ballot Measure could lead to a supply/demand imbalance. The demand for office space may outpace the supply of office space, increasing the value of office space and corresponding rents. As a result, businesses may choose to relocate outside of the ECR/D Specific Plan area."

And: "The market may not bear the higher rents (or increases in parking or other ancillary fees) the project would need to command to maintain feasibility and, as a result, businesses may locate elsewhere."

I do not want to scare off new local business or retail. The increase in rents mean that locally owned shops would likely not be able to afford the higher costs of doing business but the large national chain stores likely could.

Although proponents of the measure wanted it to lead to the "village" we all want, the impartial analysis does not support that.

That is among the many reasons I'm voting No on M and hope you will, too.

Link to Impact Report: Web Link

Thanks everyone.


Posted by Dharma
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 14, 2014 at 5:00 pm

"What is so hard to understand about the Measure only affecting open space definition, and not all the other definitions and regulations in the plan? " Sounds a lot like my 8 year old. George and "fact checker" genuinely do not understand that life and zoning are not so simple you can just snip off the part of the horse you don't like. This persistent denial is more ignorant than mean, unlike Morris Brown who played Anthony to murder Caesar when his group killed the Derry project and then claimed it was the economy that did it. [portion removed.] You cut leasable area, add legal bills and a year plus of mortgages without starting work and the investors bail - thats not peculiar to the Derry project, its any investment. An eight year old doesn't follow that but Morris you just wanted to kill development. Are you sure you want to string out your seven years of denials on this post?


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 16, 2014 at 7:05 am

Katie, Katie - when offices dominate and rents go up, retail is priced out. You KNOW that the only retail required on El Camino is a teeny part of the Stanford site. So far with the projects approved and proposed, more than 60,000 SF of retail will be lost since the Specific Plan has been adopted.
The cap on office is necessary to create balanced growth

The LWC report talks about OFFICE jobs moving elsewhere with Measure M, and then talks about no change in jobs. That means that other jobs like shops, restaurants, personal services can remain in our downtown. That was the balanced vision our community created -- not a downtown that's a regional jobs center.


Posted by Roy Thiele-Sardiña
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 16, 2014 at 8:24 am

Roy Thiele-Sardiña is a registered user.

@fact checker,

The issue is that the part that is "not office" in Measure M, will most likely become "medical Office" since as you've pointed retail may not want to pay the price. So unfortunately that would create triple the traffic of the pushed out "office space".

There will no doubt be retail, it will almost certainly be food related to service those employees.

The chance of a Hotel on the Stanford site is minimal since they already have one (which could ironically use the same driveway) appropriately names with their name "Stanford" in it.

The bottom line is that the 8.43 acres Stanford has on El Camino could be developed with more office space then they previously proposed 199,000 square feet. An as the specific plan allows 33% being allowed as medical. we could end up with 33% of 5 99,000 foot projects. Think about that, even under 5 projects of 99,000 feet each (under their magic 100,000 square foot project limit) 33,000 square feet of EACH projects could/will be Medical. a disaster for traffic on El Camino. Again one of the un-intended consequences of Measure M.

Vote NO on M
M is a Mistake

Roy Thiele-Sardiña


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 16, 2014 at 11:39 am

a hotel on the Stanford site was discussed many times while the plan was being developed. Too bad no one on the council took it off the plan so the community knew what stanford knew.

Medical office trips are distributed throughout the day, unlike general office trips that are concentrated at rush hour. The Council controls how much is possible. If you think it's too much, that is a problem with the Plan, not Measure M, and the Council can fix it.


Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 16, 2014 at 12:01 pm

Menlo Voter is a registered user.

fact checker:

If measure M passes the council cannot "fix" anything. Have you bothered to read measure M? Do you have trouble with the section that states changes to definitions, boundaries, etc require a vote of the citizens?


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 16, 2014 at 1:07 pm

Menlo Voter - you are absolutely wrong. Virtually everything in the Plan remains in Council control. Stop spreading misinformation.

The definition of what counts as open space, the overall cap on non-residential and office development, and per-project office cap are what Measure M controls within the Plan area.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 16, 2014 at 1:41 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

factless checker - You are completely wrong - PLEASE read Measure M.

READ MEASURE M Section 3 and Section 4.

"the voter- adopted development standards and DEFINITIONS set forth in Section 3, above, may be repealed or amended ONLY by a majority vote of the electorate of the City of Menlo Park voting "YES" on a ballot measure proposing such repeal or amendment at a regular or special election."
****************************
"And remember that the reason for the definitions is to indicate what is counted. That's it."

Absolutely not true - READ MEASURE M Section 3 and Section 4 - there is NOTHING here that limits these definitions to indicate what is counted.

"the voter- adopted development standards and DEFINITIONS set forth in Section 3, above, may be repealed or amended ONLY by a majority vote of the electorate of the City of Menlo Park voting "YES" on a ballot measure proposing such repeal or amendment at a regular or special election."

The supporters of Measure M refuse to quote from it to support ANY of their assertions because their assertions are WRONG.

Measure M is a Mistake and lying about what is SAYS will not change that fact. However, the fact that supporters of Measure M have to lie about what it says shows how indefensible is the poorly worded and unvetted text of this 12 page initiative.


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 16, 2014 at 1:47 pm

The definitions in Measure M are what is counted as open space and office.

Virtually everything about Measure M was thoroughly vetted during the Specific Plan review and its environmental and financial studies. The caps match what was studied in those processes.

Critics fail to acknowledge that what is happening with the Specific Plan was never vetted. If it had been, why is Greenheart project needing to go through an EIR?


Posted by Gern
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 16, 2014 at 2:25 pm

Gern is a registered user.

"If measure M passes the council cannot "fix" anything."

With this one comment Menlo Builder/Voter has outed himself as someone who has neither read nor understood Measure M. Parroting and perpetuating this nonsense that the planning commission and council "cannot fix anything if Measure M passes" is the stock in trade of certain FUDmongers on this forum, and claims that Stanford "could return with five or six 99,000 s.f. proposals" in response to the measure's success completely ignore the council approvals such new projects would require.

Peter and Roy are particularly adamant that the measure's success must needs result in these 99,000 s.f. office towers, based on absolutely zero guidance from Stanford, Greenheart, or any other entity privy to the plans of either concern. If that doesn't scare voters sufficiently Peter trundles out his 680-unit, 3-bedroom housing horror show as a possibility for either property.

Fortunately, unlike Peter and Roy, the planners at Stanford and Greenheart no doubt realize that any post-Measure M proposal they bring forth will require approvals from our city, and neither will likely waste time and money trying to convince our council and residents that we need these residential or office monoliths, or any other of the specious products of Peter's fecund imagination.

Gern


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 16, 2014 at 3:16 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Gern states -"any post-Measure M proposal they bring forth will require approvals from our city,"

Clearly Gern does not understand the way that zoning law operates. Any proposal which fully complies with the current zoning must be approved by the city subject ONLY to architectural review by the Planning Commission. And that Planning Commission review may NOT require any non architectural changes.

Why don't the Measure M supporters understand the basic laws that they are attempting to change?

This initiative was borne of ignorance and it continues with its birthright.



Posted by Roy Thiele-Sardiña
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 16, 2014 at 3:34 pm

Roy Thiele-Sardiña is a registered user.

@gern

The city will have architectural approval of the building. Can and should require traffic mitigation.

As long as those developers meet the land use requirements, the set backs, density and surface coverage requirement. they can and should build the most OPTIMIZED for profit buildings possible. Or do you expect them to leave them empty?

They will be free to build 33% medical, and whatever amount of retail they can get people to commit to. As well as 680 housing units.

To not "frustrate" measure M they can and should build 5 separate projects, submit them as five projects and space out their construction (so as not to break the "multi-=phased project provision" sec 3.3.6) It would and should have adequate parking for a 99,000 square foot building, and that would be above ground to reduce cost.

So a multi-year project with 5 separate entrances and exits from El Camino, with high traffic Retail (measure M's dream use) and high traffic Medical (the only option after hitting the 50% cap)......Oh joy, that extended construction should make El Camino a JOY to drive on.

If you have a MORE plausible scenario, talk me through it. they have 8.43 acres with technically 6 lots (one is a trip along the railroad tracks) how would YOU develop it under Measure M. We know what they proposed before, with ample under ground parking, open plaza space, etc. What do you GERN, and the anti-development proponents propose in lieu of this? I am all ears (or in this case eyes) for your CONSTRUCTIVE addition to the dialog.

Roy


Posted by wake up
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Sep 16, 2014 at 4:57 pm

In the Menlo Park pipeline is 2 million square feet of office development.
850,000 SF Bohannon Approved by MP voters
260,000 SF Sobrato Approved by current council 2 weeks ago.
400 000 SF Stanford & Greenheart on ECR proposed and current council wants to approve them
027 000 SF Hunter/Beltramo on ECR Approved and built.
430 000 SF Facebook Approved and under construction
1,967,000 SF TOTAL
60 acres just purchased by Facebook for how many SF of office? We do not know.

State and Regional Housing mandates (ABAG) will force us to find 5,000 housing sites in Menlo Park or we lose all transportation money for our roads, shuttle busses, possible undercrossing at Middle Ave.

We do not need all this office. We need retail. Stanford only has to provide 10,000 SF of retail in its 400,000 SF development, thanks to the three incumbents running for another term. Greenheart talks of 23,000 retail but has told the City, it may not work so they will have bank or real estate offices on the ground floor of their development. The General Plan calls for retail on ECR.

Peter Carpenter has no dog in this fight. He lives in a gated community in Atherton, a town that allows no offices or retail. Ignore him.

We do not want Menlo Park to turn into an Office Park, like Sunnyvale. VOTE YES ON MEASURE M


Posted by Roy Thiele-Sardiña
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 16, 2014 at 5:14 pm

Roy Thiele-Sardiña is a registered user.

@wake up

That's three blogs you posted the exact same thing in.

What's your plan? are you posting it in the one about Motorcycle Cops too.

How about an original thought, or at least a second one?

Thanks
Roy


Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 16, 2014 at 5:37 pm

Gern & Fact:

I have read measure M. Clearly either you haven't or you don't understand what you read.

Oh and Gern, if you're going to try to tear me down because I'm a builder, at least be honest about what I build (oh that's right, honesty isn't your strong suit). I DON'T BUILD COMMERCIAL BUILDINGS. I build high end custom homes. So, no matter what happens with measure M it will have no effect on me or what I do.


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 16, 2014 at 6:13 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Wake up - Feel free to attack me (as the Editors have determined that I am the only poster on this Forum who is not protected from such attacks by their Terms Of Use) but such attacks do nothing to further the dialogue on Measure M.

I encourage to explain how Menlo Park can support more retail when it cannot support the retail that it already has.

And as for having a dog in the fight I have something more important than a dog in the fight - I actually support our current retailers as they are my downtown.


Posted by Wake up
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Sep 16, 2014 at 8:17 pm

So, Roy , Peter and menlo voter. You cannt come up with any rebuttal to the fact that 2M SF of office will bring ABAG. Down on our heads and we, who live in MP will have to absorb 5,000 more housing units so Facebook fat cats can construct huge office buildings for hundreds and hundreds of employees.

[portion removed.]

Protect Menlo Park VOTE YES ON MEASURE M


Posted by fact checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 16, 2014 at 8:48 pm

WRONG about retail - Menlo Park retail vacancies are extremely low. The city website has the 2014 Q2 economic report which states: "Menlo Park’s retail vacancy rates remained relatively flat this quarter coming in around 1.3%, and is still lower than the county average of 1.7%. The City of Menlo Park continues to market the few available vacant storefronts, partnering with the brokerage community to identify and attract tenants and investment that will strengthen Menlo Park’s position as a destination retail location."


Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 16, 2014 at 9:10 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Factless - I suggest that you start talking to the local merchants and visiting the restaurants at noon. But perhaps you shop elsewhere.


Posted by Meno Park
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 16, 2014 at 9:32 pm

fact:

take a walk downtown. have conversations with the local shop and restaurant owners and see what they have to say. Better yet, do what I have done and speak to restaurateurs that have been interested in MP yet haven't opened here. Ask them why they haven't. MP is too "dead."


Posted by Thomas
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Sep 17, 2014 at 11:25 pm

[Post deleted. Please make the post about the topic, not other posters.]


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