Almanac

Viewpoint - July 20, 2011

Letter: Cargill site a bad place for housing

As someone who used to work at Pacific Shores, I can tell you that the Cargill site is a bad place to put homes, schools and seniors.

Seaport Boulevard is lined with giant piles of metal and cement that are loaded on ships at the Port of Redwood City. All this activity generates dust and noise that would impact the people in the housing that Cargill wants to build. Many Pacific Shores workers complain when our parked cars are coated with dust from the industrial activity next door.

Safety is also a major concern — as some of these companies have had major fires, with big plumes of toxic smoke. There have been at least two incidents (Sims in 2007 and Granite Rock a few months ago) in just the past five years alone.

Silicon Valley needs to be able to ship materials — we need metal recycling, cement and other building materials. Without those industries we would have a hard time building our cities.

Currently these port industries are far from housing. If housing is built next door, then those people will be exposed to that dust and other hazards and then they will be demanding to close down the industries. Just look to Cupertino, where residents who live next to a 100-year old cement plant are trying to shut it down. This problem is avoidable: Don't put housing next to heavy industry.

Matt Sweeney, Los Altos

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