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FW: Guiding Principles input

From: Murphy, Justin I C <"Murphy,>
Date: Tue, 16 Dec 2014 17:39:05 -0800

Mayor Carlton and Council,

Here is another comment regarding Agenda Item F5 on tonight's agenda for your consideration. The email below was sent to me and was not sent directly to CCIN.

Justin Murphy
Community Development Department
(650) 330-6725

From: John Kadvany [mailto:jkadvany_at_(domainremoved)
Sent: Monday, December 15, 2014 9:27 AM
To: Murphy, Justin I C
Subject: Guiding Principles input

Dear Justin -

 Please forward the following email from a friend who read and responded to the guiding principles at my request. I agree that 'local intelligence' doesn't have clear meaning, as also suggested by another friend who said something similar. I suggest either deleting it or clarifying its meaning.

Please forward this to the consultants/CC as input to their ongoing consideration of the guiding principles.

Thanks very much,


(email follows below)

yeah there is a lot of interesting phraseology ("local intelligence"?) that suggests the participation of some interesting bureaucrats. But I'll assume that every word was parsed for effect.

Two things pop up in my mind that I think are significant for some sort of "vision" statement such as this.

The first, and a concept that you and I both have experienced, is there is no talk of the place of the elderly in the town. There is explicit talk of "youth support". But what happens to the elderly? They move out to Palo Alto. I think there are towns in Massachusetts that explicitly say they want to be a multi generational "village". That's part of the vision of the jewish community center in Palo Alto. And obviously a lot of places in Europe embrace this (we could have a square for old guys to meet and play chess). Funny that a group of "boomer generation" leaders is not being more selfish to think about what happens to them as they age in Menlo Park. Maybe it's all part of the boomer hubris that they never age.

The second is that we live in earthquake country. A devastating earthquake will happen in 10, 20 or 50 years. And we will get hit twice-once by the Hayward fault and once by the San Andreas. It is inevitable and certain. So is there any vision for self sustenance after a disaster, resiliency, etc. This is more than just building code. It also involves planning, services, community roles, etc. Ironic that the USGS is in Menlo Park and yet nothing is included. With USGS here, Menlo Park could take a leadership role in demonstrating how local municipalities should be involved and plan. (or are we just deciding to leave it to the federal govt to figure it out?) To me this is in the same league, and frankly more impactful to the local population, as "sustainability". I think sustainability is fine to include, but is a little "trendy". Earthquake disaster preparation is something that we should have signed up for when you choose to live in this area.

As a former seismic engineer, I think about living in earthquake country as more than emergency preparedness, just as living in the mountains is more than preparing for the next blizzard. Not sure what the purpose of the guiding principles is suppose to be. or what land use is. But as an example, stanford/palo alto built an emergency water reservoir under the playing fields across from the stanford shopping center. Is that land use? Or as you know, you're supposed to have a site to meet. Just as campuses have those blue light emergency kiosks, maybe cities should have easy to designate meeting sites. Waste treatment is a big deal in those sorts of situations. At a minimum given that the USGS is in Menlo Park, maybe somebody ought to ask them whether they have ideas of how cities should incorporate living in earthquake country into their city planning?

my two cents
Received on Tue Dec 16 2014 - 17:32:43 PST

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