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General Plan Update and Zoning Ordinance Amendments

From: domainremoved <Patti>
Date: Mon, 28 Nov 2016 17:09:45 -0800

Dear City Council -
It is "interesting" to hear that the GP Update will make the environment
better. It will not.
That comment from Consultant Knox compares the new zoning changes to doing
nothing. Unfortunately, that comment ignores
a) the Projected 2040 Buildout conditions are:actually worse for Menlo
Park's environment when compared to existing conditions, especially related
to traffic, and
b) existing zoning is responsible for worsened impacts but the GP Update
does not change existing zoning citywide. Worse, it merely reaffirms
existing zoning in most of Menlo Park.

You CAN and SHOULD change existing zoning, and further improve traffic and
other environmental impacts. This should be done in at least two areas:
1) GREEN AND SUSTAINABLE BUILDING MEASURES - apply these citywide.
As written, the GPU only being applies these measures to the 3 new zoning
districts near Facebook, not to the rest of Menlo Park. You could put a new
section into the Zoning Ordinance that applies to all zoning districts or
add them to each individual zoning district.

2) PROMOTE BETTER JOBS/HOUSING BALANCE - In mixed use districts, establish
approval limits so that proposed housing exceeds new housing demand from
proposed commercial development. Ensure that the housing supply improves
before adding to the demand for even more.
Better yet, take the time to calibrate allowed development by current
business practices that cram many more workers into the same space as in
the past, bringing ever more commuters onto our streets and neighborhoods.
Traffic would be improved and environmental impacts would be lessened with
a better balance, as shown in the EIR.

Both of these kinds of changes to the Zoning Ordinance can be done now.

Both of these changes would lessen environmental impacts. Thus, there would
be no need to reissue the EIR; some sort of statement to that effect has
been provided in the past when projects got changed in a way that lessened
the impacts, so there is precedence. Do the responsible thing.

Respectfully submitted,
Patti Fry

PS Thanks to councilmember Mueller and Commissioners Strehl and Riggs for
highlighting the need to plan and to find funding for infrastructure
improvements before more development is approved. Traffic congestion is
nearing the point of no return so do everything you can to prevent it from
worsening. We residents should not be left holding the bag for funding
infrastructure improvements
Received on Mon Nov 28 2016 - 17:14:14 PST

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