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County looks at adding billboards to public land

Original post made on Mar 17, 2016

The short paragraph in the report from San Mateo County Manager John Maltbie was enough to catch the attention, and spark the ire, of Lennie Roberts, the Committee for Green Foothills' legislative advocate.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, March 16, 2016, 12:00 AM

Comments (7)

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Posted by Ted Ullman
a resident of another community
on Mar 17, 2016 at 1:55 pm

I suspect that most of my fellow members of the Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) will, like me, find disgraceful the idea of placing billboards on i280 which is described as the "World's Most Beautiful Highway". Even highway 92 is a terrible idea. Despite our horrible traffic, we live in one of the most scenic areas in the world. This proposal would destroy one of the reasons that so many of us chose to live here. And for what is this proposal? So we can raise $7,875,000 per eyesore in 30 years? That's $260,000 revenue per year or less than a theoretical $1.00/yr reduction in my real estate tax. But no one pays so much for a billboard ad. The highest in San Francisco is about $60,000 per year (billboardsin.com) so it really is less than $0.25/yr tax saving. Anyone environmentally unconcerned enough to make such a proposal, duplicitous enough to exaggerate the economic benefit by perhaps 10-fold, and foolish enough to make a 30 year projection in the future should not be a member of our Board of Supervisors.


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Posted by Jack Hickey
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Mar 18, 2016 at 4:20 pm

Jack Hickey is a registered user.

From "Recreational Potential of The Junipero Serra Freeway Through the Upper Crystal Springs Watershed" Prepared for State of California Division of Highways by Hall & Goodhue and Robert Trent Jones, Inc.
December 1967

"The World's Most Beautiful Freeway." This phrase was
written many years ago to describe the aspirations of the
people of the Bay Area for the new Junipero Serra Freeway.
Approaching San Francisco from the south, the route
winds through the undulating foothills of Los Altos, Palo
Alto, and Woodside. Then, for fourteen miles, it runs
through a vast, forested open space. This green corridor of
watershed land, in effect an arm of San Francisco, reaches
down the center of the Peninsula and forms the City's
southern gateway.
Surrounded on three sides by water, San Francisco has
three automobile approaches. Two are internationally
famous as spectacular gateways to one of the world's most
beautiful cities. From both, one beholds the City set apart
across a broad blue open space of water. Years ago, San
Francisco also enjoyed a handsome entrance from the
south, a land route through the open hills and valleys of
the Peninsula. But today, in contrast to the beautiful
approaches from north and east, the southern entrance is
through the urban sprawl typical of most cities, clogged and
cluttered with billboards and industry.
With the Junipero Serra Freeway, San Francisco now
has a new chance for an elegant southern entrance. It was
in this context that the study in this report was undertaken
—to seek out the most beautiful, most varied, and most
sensitive design for the first four miles of the southern
gateway.
The fourteen-mile scenic drive through the 20,000 acre
watershed, as free as possible from any visual contact with
the surrounding urbanization, will be the most important
recreational aspect of the plan, enjoyed daily by thousands.
The four-mile section of the drive now under study will be
like a four-minute reel of a movie travelogue extolling the
beauty and variety of the natural Peninsula landscape,
enhanced by the green grass of golf courses and the contrasting
blue of several lakes.
The route, carefully placed in the terrain, will leave the
hills absolutely unscarred. North and southbound lanes
will be two visually separate roads. Recreational facilities
planned for the area have been placed to enhance the drive
as a vast landscaped linear park at a scale beyond even the
famous European royal parks.
Two and one-half miles of golf course fairways have
been placed along the road so that the first glimpses of
Crystal Springs Lake will be set off in bright green. Softly
rounded golden hills crowned with oaks, typical of the
Peninsula, will lie to the right and left of the road. Vistas
across broad natural meadows enclosed with dense oaks
growing in masses as though each were a huge spreading
single tree—a moment in the depths of the woods—a sudden
opening-out of the scene to new vistas of the water—
lakes framed on the opposite side by thick woods—bright
green turf again placed as a foreground to the distant
wooded mountains—this is the sequence of scenes that will
unfold, unspoiled by the sight of the urban growth which is
rapidly pressing against the watershed all along the cast side.
With the possibility of recreational use of this part of
the watershed, the Junipero Serra Freeway will bring riding,
hiking, and the many other recreational activities in
the plan within a handsome twenty-minute drive from San
Francisco. All the recreational opportunities of the watershed
heretofore considered are possible on the modified
adopted route of the freeway.
In the studies of the area it was observed that the land
can he divided into four classifications according to land
form: the flat valley floor, the rolling hills, the steep hillsides,
and the top of the ridge. In this specific area, one of
the four, the rolling hills, is the most beautiful and appropriate
route for the road. The rolling hills are more interesting
than the valley floor. Deep scars which would have
to be made on the face of the steep hillsides to reach the
ridge would never heal. On the ridge vegetation is sparse,
subdivisions are already at the very edge of the watershed,
and the view is mediocre.


Like this comment
Posted by Michael Stogner
a resident of another community
on Mar 18, 2016 at 4:34 pm

A Terrible Idea


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Posted by Jack Hickey
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Mar 18, 2016 at 4:54 pm

Jack Hickey is a registered user.

Michael, how about the original idea?

"The four-mile section of the drive now under study will be
like a four-minute reel of a movie travelogue extolling the
beauty and variety of the natural Peninsula landscape,
enhanced by the green grass of golf courses and the contrasting
blue of several lakes." and,
"Two and one-half miles of golf course fairways have
been placed along the road so that the first glimpses of
Crystal Springs Lake will be set off in bright green."


Like this comment
Posted by fwiw
a resident of Woodside: other
on Mar 18, 2016 at 8:43 pm

According to the Caltrans website, San Mateo County and Santa Clara County have scenic protections in place such that Interstate 280 is protected from the South all the way up to the north city limit of Daly City. It is "scenic eligible" but without protection for the remaining part of San Mateo County up through San Francisco County.

I presume that it is this section north of Daly City where San Mateo is going to investigate signage.


Like this comment
Posted by fwiw
a resident of Woodside: other
on Mar 18, 2016 at 8:47 pm

Oops, I thought there was a gap between Daly City and SF County, but there is not. So at least I-280 does apparently have scenic protections in place all the way up to San Francisco County (where it becomes unprotected).


Like this comment
Posted by Michael G. Stogner
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2016 at 12:09 pm

San Mateo County Manager John Maltbie on Billboards on 101 & 280. From his Memo to Supervisors March 8, 2016.

"The first step in the process is an assessment by Allvision/Outfront Media of County-owned land along Highway 101 and Interstate 280 corridors to determine the most profitable location for billboards."

Not that long ago the City of San Carlos managed by Jeff Maltbie son of County manager John Maltbie changed the ordinance re: Rights of Property Owners and Billboards. The result is simple if you are a private property owner on 101/280 you may not have Billboards on your property. Only Public Property is allowed to have Billboards.

Welcome to San Mateo County


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