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Proposed Office Building at 40 Middlefield

From: domainremoved <Teddy>
Date: Thu, 3 May 2018 16:49:35 -0700

To City Council and Planning Commission:

        You have undoubtedly already received many emails and phone calls from residents in the Willows about the proposed building at 40 Middlefield. Although this is going to be another one, I’d like to make clear that virtually none of these people are just NIMBYs. We aren’t opposed to development; no one wants a dirt lot as the entrance to their neighborhood. My objections, and what I believe are those of my neighbors, are the impact on (1) adjoining streets; (2) parking; and especially on (3) the small local businesses nearby, specifically the Willows Market and Applebee’s Preschool.

It’s not easy to figure out how to ameliorate the problems inherent in this location, but there are two things that might help: requiring all the parking that would normally by allowed by city rules, and slightly reducing the proposed building footprint in order to make that possible.

Allowing reduced parking for the development has clear implications for the adjoining streets and the Willows Market, which already has only a few spaces of its own. As residents of Baywood Avenue, we’re concerned about the inevitable overflow parking from the new building as well as from the market, as they will have even less parking for their customers. We already have people who who park on our street and walk across Middlefield to Palo Alto on some mornings.

As for traffic, the intersections of Middlefield and Woodland, Middlefield and Baywood, and Middlefield and Willow are already rife with problems. Another intersection with multiple turns will exacerbate the problem. As one of our neighbors noted, the proposed building would have a driveway between the driveway for the market and the turn onto Woodland, making three points where people would be trying to cross Middlefield in a very short block.

We who live In the Willows really value our local businesses, particularly the Willows Market, and the impact on them could be significant, especially if a hard wall between the new building and service road behind the market is built as proposed.

According to Nick, who manages the Willows Market, his business relies heavily on trucks, often large ones, being able to make deliveries at the back of the store at all different hours. The market is much more than a grocery, wine and deli; they have many more employees, and contracts with other businesses, such as Stanford, than it appears from the outside. Until recently, I, for one, had no idea that was the case. The whole neighborhood loves and supports the market and would hate to see it negatively impacted by this development.

Finally, although the developers say that they don’t intend to have a tenant who will create a high volume of traffic or parking needs, obviously once the building is built, there is no guarantee that that first tenant will remain indefinitely or who a new tenant might be.

Please consider requiring some changes to the proposal to address residents’ concerns before the project is approved. Thank you.

        Teddy and Robert Wilson
        118 Baywood Avenue
Received on Thu May 03 2018 - 16:51:58 PDT

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