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Transportation Committee Comments on Menlo Park General Plan EIR

From: domainremoved <Adina>
Date: Mon, 1 Aug 2016 14:23:40 -0700

Dear Council Members and staff,

Following are comments from the Menlo Park Transportation Commission
regarding the General Plan EIR

The Transportation Commission strongly supports the strategies and policies
to improve access and reduce traffic congestion by increasing sustainable
transportation options.

While the 20% trip reduction requirement for new development is realistic
based on the current transportation infrastructure, there are studies in
progress and policy goals to significantly improve transit and active
transportation infrastructure on the Dumbarton Corridor and in the area.
Therefore, for stronger transportation mitigation, we would like to see a
phased plan, as used in the San Mateo Rail Corridor plan, where a stronger
goal was required after Caltrain electrification and the upgrade of the
Hillsdale station.

For the General Plan, there should be one or more future phase goals if and
when there are major transportation improvements on the Dumbarton corridor
and/or other major initiatives directed by General Plan policies. With
stronger transportation infrastructure, the trip reduction goal should be
40% (approximately 50% drivealone mode share) or other goal stronger than
today’s goal as evaluated by staff once specific transportation
improvements are planned.

The ConnectMenlo EIR shows that adding jobs near housing reduces Vehicle
Miles Travelled, since some people are likely to take advantage of the
opportunity for a shorter commute, if the opportunity is available. To
ensure that the community gets the benefits of this reduction, it would be
helpful to implement phasing in the plan, allowing staged buildout of the
commercial space with triggers to ensure that corresponding housing has
been built.

In addition, the ConnectMenlo EIR shows that with full implementation of
the plan, the jobs/housing balance would be worse than currently. To
reduce the VMT impacts of a worsened jobs/housing balance, we would urge
the City Council to direct additional planning with the goal of adding more
housing near jobs elsewhere in the city. However, this direction should
not delay approval and implementation of the General Plan’s changes for the
M2 area.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

Adina Levin for
The Menlo Park Transportation Commission
650-646-4344
Received on Mon Aug 01 2016 - 14:30:53 PDT

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