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Library Project Informational Item

From: domainremoved <Karen>
Date: Tue, 28 Aug 2018 20:01:49 +0000

Dear Mayor Ohtaki and City Councilmembers,

Given that the discussion of the library systems improvement project is recommended to be postponed because of the Brown Act violation related to that proposal, I urge you to direct staff to use the additional time to explore dedicating city land in the downtown project area to affordable housing. The primary reason staff recommended not including affordable housing as part of the project was that it would cause delay, so it makes sense to use the Brown-Act imposed delay to ensure we are making the best use for our community of the public land near transit and services.

The city satisfaction survey highlighted housing and traffic as the number one and two identified priorities for Menlo Park residents.

As noted in the library project staff report, during the three community input meetings, many people spoke enthusiastically in favor of affordable housing at the library site, and some people were opposed; staff concluded that there was a lack of consensus on the question but that is a conclusion that can be drawn from any public input process.

Given the undeniable housing crisis and traffic woes our community is experiencing, I hope you will exert your leadership and instruct staff to pursue all avenues to *build* consensus for dedicating public land near downtown transit to affordable housing.

As previously noted by me and many others, if the city makes the land available, affordable housing developers will come forward with proposals that will address our housing shortage, reduce traffic congestion and increase pedestrian and bicycle mobility, and reduce our city’s contribution to climate change by allowing people to live near transit and near their jobs. More people living and walking downtown will help our downtown businesses to thrive, and will build a sense of liveliness and community downtown.

We need your leadership at this moment of need and opportunity. Please direct staff to explore and build consensus for dedicating public land at the civic center for affordable housing.

Karen Grove
(housing commissioner, writing on my own behalf)

Received on Tue Aug 28 2018 - 13:01:02 PDT

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