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Willow Village NOP

From: domainremoved <Pamela>
Date: Mon, 7 Oct 2019 17:24:28 -0700

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Dear Planning Commissioners and Staff,
Thank-you for the opportunity to comment on the NOP for the Willow Village project.
The current Public Notice process may fail to reach the target population. Since there is no “local newspaper” for the effected neighborhoods, this process should follow the TIERS Public Engagement process approved by the City Council on June11, 2019. This includes but not limited to multiple mailings, emails, link on mail City website, posting on frequented establishments, and City property.
There is currently no public information on the current number of Facebook employees and contracted employees in multiple buildings throughout District 1. Without this information it is impossible to access transportation impacts. Currently there is a pending Bus Stop Occupancy Plan which should also be included.
The Dumbarton Corridor project including train stop must be a part of the Environment Impact Report process. Current and proposed projects must also be included:

1. Bohannon Gateway (almost completed),

2. Gateway Family Housing,

3. Sobrato Office development,

4. SP Menlo LLC multi-family,

5. Menlo Uptown,

6. Menlo Portal, and

7. Hotels citizen and Moxy.
Comments specific to Discussion Topics:

1. Mix of land use and master plan development.

a. ConnectMenlo was adopted in 2016, there is now a City-wide discussion by residents and Council on how the vision of a live/work/play environment is being created in the Bayfront Area. The moratorium proposed by two Council members had overwhelming, City-Wide and deeply affected Belle Haven neighborhood, support.

Currently two Council sub-committees are preparing reports to address ConnectMenlo and the Downtown Specific Plan. Vision and jobs-housing imbalance is are major themes.

It may prove useful to review Council meetings, CCIN, and community oral input to better understand the sentiment of residents, whether or not this information can be used directedly in the DEIR.

2. Site density and intensity

a. FAR should be reduced significantly for office. This project may bring 6,000 additional employees the current approximately 3,000. This number should be added to the Northern area that currently has approximately 18,000+ employees. This number will increase as current office development is completed in the M2 area. It has been publicly stated that 35,000 employees are expected upon complete buildout. This number is approximately the same as the current population in the City of Menlo Park.

Additionally, there is no accurate data on the number (percentage) of displaced and current residents are employed by Facebook creating a work/life environment.

b. There is a significant housing/jobs imbalance. A housing needs and displacement study must include change of property ownership, including LLCs for the past 10 years. In addition, the number of apartments and homes unoccupied, reserved for Airbnb, reserved for corporations, or otherwise unavailable to the public must be included.

Without full transparency, there can be no accurate assessment of the current effect on the closest neighborhoods.

c. Although a hotel may bring some relief from corporate apartments, the location is next to the proposed Dumbarton Corridor train stop.

d. A significant decrease (30% to 50%) in office will allow for an increase in housing 2,500 to 3,000 units through re-zoning.

In addition to senior housing, BMR should be increased to 25%, workforce housing 25%, and for-sale condos should the included. This will require a request from the developer and City policy change. At a minimum Menlo Park is responsible for its jobs-housing imbalance and should ensure mitigation.

3. Phasing

a. The residential and commercial areas should be completed prior to any office development.

b. The potential loss of the local businesses on Willow Road and Hamilton Avenue will create an additional hardship on the residential area.

4. Community amenities

a. The suggested community amenities, except a grocery store and pharmacy, should be reviewed. The grocery store must be compatible with the needs of the current residents.

5. Publicly accessible open space

a. A decrease in office development will allow for more open space creating a higher level of environmental balance and increased air pollution.
Study Session project analysis - Proposed circulation
The internal circulation must include a direct access to Bayfront Expressway from the Southern boundary. Traffic studies must include “cross-traffic” between University Avenue, O’Brien Avenue, and Willow Road. In addition, “cut-through traffic along Hamilton Avenue, Chilco Avenue, and Ivy Drive will need to be re-studied.
Public access must be included throughout the site.
The proposed Dumbarton corridor train stop on Willow Road and Bayfront Expressway must be included with traffic impacts on Willow Road traveling East.
City of Menlo Park must complete the process of acquiring Willow Road from Caltrans. Historically Caltrans has been slow to meet the requests for signal light phasing.
Enforcement of no bus, shuttle, or private vehicles on local streets is important. A substantial fine schedule should be developed for exceeding trip cap.
Pedestrian overcrossings should be researched and documented for pedestrian safety and increasing traffic speed. Overcrossings are not friendly to people with acrophobia.
Impact of traffic from Bohannon buildings, Sobrato proposed development, and Hotels shuttles, buses, and private vehicles (including Uber, Lyft and limousines).
Air Quality
A determination of environmental effect must have a base-line on the current effect on local residential areas, to compare with future measures. The closest EPA air quality monitoring is in Redwood City. This location is inadequate to measure our local area. San Mateo County Labs will be installing monitors in the Belle Haven neighborhood which may provide required information.
Respectfully, Pamela D. Jones

--
The impossible dissipates when I becomes WE.
Received on Mon Oct 07 2019 - 17:17:01 PDT

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