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Referring to themselves as the 'poverty pocket' of Atherton, some residents facing upzoning threaten legal action

Original post made on Jan 19, 2023

A group of Atherton residents is pushing back against a plan to upzone their lots to allow for denser housing development as part of the town's efforts to get its state-mandated housing element approved.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, January 19, 2023, 11:37 AM

Comments (2)

Posted by David B
a resident of another community
on Jan 19, 2023 at 12:33 pm

David B is a registered user.

Honest question, that maybe the opponents want to address:

How do the opponents conclude that this rezoning would be taking their houses away from them and their children?

The current houses would be grandfathered in. Yes, it seems there would be some limits on future changes to them... they couldn't be scraped and rebuilt. But they could stay in place and be maintained forever.

They're not saying in this article (is this what they believe?) that if higher density housing was built on another lot on their street, that would change the "character" of their neighborhood in a way they want to oppose? That's a whole different discussion about property rights and etc.

Either way, no multifamily will be built until someone wants to sell, and someone wants to buy and build. Is there a way to write the zoning that would allow both single family and multi family on the same block... so anyone who wants to stay (and remodel) their house can continue, and anyone who wants to sell their property to be merged with others and developed into higher density, can? Or does the town have to write multi-family-only zoning to force these properties to transition over time?


Posted by Fight for Democracy
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jan 19, 2023 at 5:56 pm

Fight for Democracy is a registered user.

Good question, David B. I don't have a dog in this fight, but it got me thinking...

What if I want to add an extra bedroom... or expand a kitchen or living room... or add an ADU. If I'm reading this correctly, I can't. That feels like the liberty to do what I want with MY property (which would be perfectly fine in any other part of Atherton) is being taken away. I think I'd be pissed too.


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