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Letter: Council members, listen to your constituents

Original post made on Sep 12, 2013

So where are we now? Almost a year has passed since Stanford's first proposal for the eight-plus-acre property at 500 El Camino Real and reality has set in along with suspicion and fear. Yes, there have been improvements made to Stanford's plan with the elimination of medical offices but overall, the heavy lifting has been done by the residents, the very people who voted for our current council.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, September 11, 2013, 12:00 AM

Comments (18)

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Posted by humanity
a resident of another community
on Sep 12, 2013 at 12:32 pm

The number of disappointed and angry residents is a drop in the bucket compared to the masses that were upset twelve years ago, by the bulb-outs and obstacles installed on Santa Cruz Ave.


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 12, 2013 at 12:45 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I challenged the opponents to put up or shut up - and they declined to respond:

Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of the Atherton: Lindenwood neighborhood, on Sep 3, 2013 at 7:14 pm

Peter Carpenter is a member (registered user) of Almanac Online

Since the opponents are unwilling to answer the questions posed above I think it is time to put this opposition to rest. In order to place this issue on the ballot of the next general election the opponents would need about 1800 signatures of registered Menlo Park voters and in order to place in on a special election ballot they would need about 2700 signatures of registered Menlo Park voters. i have reviewed all of the Town Forum comments posted by identified Menlo Park residents and all of the emails and public comments to the city council by residents and there are less than 100 unique identified individuals who have spoken out against this project. It appears highly unlikely that they could obtain the required signatures particularly IF they provided each potential signer with a copy of the latest staff report and the subcommittee report (you do believe in full disclosure don't you?).

It is time to move on.


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Posted by old timer
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 13, 2013 at 7:18 am

Rich Cline is the source of all the problems here. It was his main theme when he first ran for council to institute a specific plan.

But he let us all down. Rather than make sure the EIR for the plan was fully vetted, he let Staff go off on their own, and Staff wants nothing more the more and more development, so that they can be paid higher and higher salaries. The specific plan is a disaster.

[Portion removed. Please don't attack other posters.]


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 13, 2013 at 7:39 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"if Peter Carpenter is on the Stanford payroll."

No.

"Since he is not a Menlo Park resident, he should be ignored."

Of course, wisdom on such matters can only come from the 'villagers'.

I am a very frequent shopper in Menlo Park, I travel ECR almost daily and I have a lot of experience in city planning having been a planning commissioner in Palo Alto and I have been twice elected by Menlo Park voters to serve on your Fire Board. Feel free to ignore the voice of experience in favor of someone who lives in Menlo Park but lacks that experience.

I challenge you to search this forum and find one other person who has posted more facts on this issue.


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Posted by Elizabeth
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Dec 1, 2013 at 9:53 pm

Although I think Peter C. like hearing himself more than anyone else, I do agree that the SP should be put on the ballot and even implored the Council to do so before the SP was approved.

Put it to a vote of the people, for the people, by the people. Not for the developers, for the money, and for the good of Staff and Stanford.


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Posted by Mike Keenly
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Dec 2, 2013 at 12:37 am

If the SP made it to the ballot, it's not difficult to predict it would be voted down by the residents. Unfortunately, I don't think our Council has the courage to put it on the ballot, as they too could predict this outcome.


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 2, 2013 at 2:13 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Yes , over a year has passed and a lot of changes have been made with the heavy lifting being done by the planning commission and the ad hoc council committee. Yet not one signature has been collected to qualify this issue as a ballot measure.

Time to move on.


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Posted by WakeUpMenlo
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Dec 2, 2013 at 11:40 am

Peter Carpenter has had many comments on the proposed Stanford development on El Camino. He says he is not on the Stanford payroll. Yet he has worked in the past for many many years for Stanford, and likely still has connections high up in various departments, including the Medical Center. Checkout the biography at Web Link , a few lines from that:

1991-2002: Stanford University, various boards and committees

1976-1992: ALZA Corporation, Palo Alto, California [ALZA was acquired by Johnson & Johnson in 2001 for $10.5 billion]

1975-1976: Executive Director, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, California

1973-1976: Assistant Vice President for Medical Affairs, Stanford University, Stanford, California

1968-1970: Assistant Director, Center for Materials Research, Stanford University, Stanford, California

---

Peter asks us to "please move on", and admit that this massive office development by Stanford is in the town's best interest.


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 2, 2013 at 11:43 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

" likely still has connections high up in various departments, including the Medical Center."

None.


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Posted by Old MP
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 2, 2013 at 1:30 pm

Somehow I just don't see how anyone can get enough signatures to oppose this. It is time to move on.


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Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 2, 2013 at 6:59 pm

Old MP:

they can't and they won't. If there was a snowball's chance in hell of it happening we'd be seeing the signature collectors in front of Safeway already.


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Posted by complacent
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 2, 2013 at 9:33 pm

Peter, er, I mean Menlo Voter, it may be a little too soon for you to be so smug.

By the way, perhaps you and/or your doppelganger will explain WHY it is that you want this project to proceed in its bloated, unproductive state? Do you personally benefit financially? Professionally? It's pretty clear that this project is not in the best interests of the community, so we can only assume it's in your best interests.


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 3, 2013 at 12:54 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"WHY it is that you want this project to proceed in its bloated, unproductive state"


Your assumptions (bloated, unproductive) preclude an intelligent response.

After a lot of public discussion and careful deliberation the planning commission and the city council made the unanimous decision that the Downtown ECR Specific Plan was in the best interest of the community and they have reaffirmed that judgement with respective to a number of individual projects.

Time to move on. And you can also vote with your feet and move to a real village.


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Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 3, 2013 at 8:58 am

complacent:

I have zero financial or professional interest in the Stanford project. If you have seen anything I have previously posted about this project you would know I am not too happy with it. BUT, it complies with the zoning as set forth in the DSP. The DSP was put together over years with plenty of public input.

I think the majority of Menlo Park citizens understand that to not abide by decisions made in zoning and development will ensure continued blight along ECR. Most citizens understand the DSP was put together in a transparent process and it is only the no-growthers and others with narrow self interests that want to stop it. I think if there really was a majority against this project there would be signature collectors out front of Safeway right now.


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Posted by Julie
a resident of another community
on Dec 3, 2013 at 1:57 pm


Replying to WakeUpMenlo:

Even though it would seem I'm on the other side of the debate re: The Airport discussion with Peter Carpenter's opinions, I think it was very uncool of you to post the web link to his background...including contact numbers, etc.


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Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Dec 3, 2013 at 6:24 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Julie - Thank you for your concern but people like so-called wake up menlo are basically cowards and they have no compunction about anything they post on this forum because they do so anonymously.


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Posted by WhoRUpeople
a resident of another community
on Dec 4, 2013 at 2:22 pm

As always, the savemenlo bunch is trying to tie the DSP issues to the 500 ECR project issues. First, I believe the truth is that there is currently no official application for a project at 500 ECR. THe reason-because the CIty of MP which legally passed a DSP and set zoning in place has now shown its still the same old screwed up place. No set rules, and if you put forth a project that we don't like, we'll make new rules that make your project non-compliant.
The CC is revisiting the DSP, that should have nothing to do with any project that Stanford may or may not submit for 500 El Camino. Fix your plan MP, set the rules, and then tell the savemenlo bunch to shut up. To quote a fellow poster whom I respect,


"enjoy the view".


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Posted by sticks in the eyes
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Dec 5, 2013 at 8:58 am

The Council asked for suggestions, and the SaveMenlo organization crafted a set of those with the Sierra Club. What happened? The subcommittee only met twice with the SaveMenlo representatives and didn't even have the courtesy of letting them know what they were doing until the results of their private negotiations were announced through the press.
Then the Council didn't even pay attention to the recommendations, instead listening to a room full of developers who claimed they needed everything kept just the way they are in the Specific Plan. The Council also ignored the overwhelming number of letters from residents concerned about the Plan.
This Council kowtows to developers and puts sticks in the eyes of residents.
The projects under construction were built under the old rules. Residents should look hard at the project on El Camino and College. It could be MUCH bigger and residents would have no voice about it. Others will be shocked when the huge office buildings start getting built. So much for the small town character that was the #1 desire of the Vision. This Council doesn't get it.
Johnck is right about a sea change ahead. It just happened in Palo Alto, and Menlo Park will follow.


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