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Support for ConnectMenlo Land Use and Circulation Elements & Menlo Spark Recommendations for Sustainability Improvements

From: domainremoved <Diane>
Date: Mon, 5 Oct 2015 23:03:56 -0700

Dear Mayor Carlton, City Council Members, Planning Commissioners, and staff,
Please find attached our recommendations for sustainability improvements to
the General Plan Update, ³ConnectMenlo.² This is a powerful tool to create
the changes needed in city-wide infrastructure to improve our communities
and support Climate Action Plan goals in Menlo Park. We are at moment in
time where sustainability and climate action plans need to be integrated
into general plans, and the state requires this through the CEQA process.
Fortunately, the very improvements called for to address climate and
sustainability will also ease traffic congestion and create a healthier,
more vibrant City with more pleasant options to get around town. The General
Plan update already contains many excellent goals, policies and projects
that we support. However, there are key additional policies that will be
necessary for Menlo Park to meet its Climate Action Plan goals. We
recommend the following:
· Land Use Element

o Net Zero Energy sustainable building standards, incentives and clean
energy goals;

o Support for Electric Vehicles;

o Increased High Density Residential Land Use; and

o Stronger and Simpler Public Benefits:

 

· Circulation Element

o Consider congestion pricing on the Dumbarton Bridge to curtail traffic;

o Adopt Caltrans goals of tripling bicycle mode share and doubling walking
and transit mode share by 2020;

o Provide highly visible signage for bike and pedestrian routes through the
City with ³wayfinding;²

o Analyze the emerging transportation technologies including people movers,
personal rapid transit and autonomous cars;

o Facilitate the use of low-speed e-bikes and e-scooters;

o Encourage all new developments to offer free or heavily discounted
transit passes; and

o Create a demand-based priced parking program including ³Smart meters,²

o Retain the excellent compromise language that allows Level of Service
(LOS) as a transportation assessment tool that can supplement Vehicle Miles
Traveled (VMT), which is an improved metric that is soon to be required by
statute.

If the General Plan update contemplates adding over 2 million square feet of
new commercial development, the City should ensure that this does not add to
our climate debt, pollution and congestion. We hope the attached examples of
successful projects, practices and planning language can help support a more
sustainable Plan. We are grateful for the efforts of staff and policy
advisors to date in incorporating diverse input and strengthening the Plan.
Thank you for considering our recommendations.
Sincerely,
Diane Bailey

Diane Bailey | Executive Director
MENLO SPARK
diane_at_(domainremoved)
Visit us: www.MenloSpark.org <http://www.menlospark.org/>
Find us on Facebook
<https://www.facebook.com/menlospark2025?ref=aymt_homepage_panel>
Follow us on Twitter <https://twitter.com/MenloSpark2025>
Climate Neutral for a Healthy, Prosperous Menlo Park
 





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Received on Mon Oct 05 2015 - 23:05:43 PDT

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