Monday, July 16, 2007

Reading the Other Blog

It is true that the other blogger and I do read each other's blog.

I think he believes his approach is best for San Pedro and I believe keeping the current zoning at Ponte Vista is the best for OUR community. There is nothing really emotional about these statements. We have a difference of opinion.

I did try compromise with the other blogger. I made it until May 29, 2007 before I could no longer wait to see if he would move on his numbers. Prior to that time, I was more flexible that many folks thought I should be. I did really try to communicate about coming up with a plan that was between 429 and 2,300, and I was also looking for something less than 1,700-units. The other blogger would not budge. Even Bob budged. But it seems the 1,700-unit total is still as it was last March. That is not looking for a compromise, in my opinion.

What is so wrong with San Pedro and the other communities surrounding it that makes the other blogger want to change it so badly? Why does the other blogger demand so many units?

Has the other blogger considered the real type of housing "needed" in San Pedro? Does OUR community really demand such an upscale development when folks claim there is such a "need" for housing? Or perhaps some folks, and perhaps not the other blogger, WANT upscale housing where it may be wanted, but not "needed"?

Bob is building luxury in a community that is working class. Sure there are developments like Vue and Urban Village that may attract higher end buyers. But it seems to me that all the folks yelling that there is a "need" for housing, when they talk about Ponte Vista, are also seemingly demanding upscale housing that many folks will not be able to buy into.

It is absolutely true that if single-family, detached housing is built at Ponte Vista, it will be expensive. Even if it is Patio-style homes on less than R1 sized lots, those too will cost a chunk of change. But what do folks really feel they "need" or "want"? It also seems they "need" housing, but only if it is for the wealthier buyers, in a condominium-style development.

Don't we already have condominium developments that are struggling to sell out? If the last development of R1 housing was back in 1974, in San Pedro, why can't there be another development like that? Twenty-three years seems like a fair amount of time to have one more chance to buy single-family homes in a development of some size, don't you think?

In the time span between the last R1 development and now, how many condominium developments, small condominium buildings, apartment buildings, and individual R1 homes have been built on individual lots? Should some consideration be paid to trying to keep housing of different types available to all who want them?

We can pour out facts about Bob, his dealings with Lincoln Place, both with photos and facts, we can also post analysis about what he did in Berkeley, but I think OUR community has seen enough of Bob and from Bob to already have a fairly reasonable idea about what we might really expect from this developer.

I have tried to get folks to tell us what they think we need and what they really want. I don't believe it is correct to shove developments down our throats because of a "need" for housing for lots of other folks. It is true that many of us wish to protect OUR community from overcrowding, too much congestion, lowering of the quality of live as we believe it will be. There are thousands and thousands of neighbors in our area trying as they might to defend OUR community and they deserve our ears, eyes, and voices.

The other blogger can spend all day listing facts, issuing statements, telling us what he demands, but we also have the right to learn about not having such a large development in our area.

We have the duty to ourselves, our neighbors, and OUR community to take a strong stand and state that Ponte Vista at San Pedro, whether it has 1,300, 1,500, 1,700, 1,950, or even 2,300-units, IS JUST TOO LARGE!

On July 24, some expect that the CAC will make recommendations to Ms. Hahn about the total number of units they want to see at Ponte Vista. I also hope at that meeting, the Planning Department will weigh in about the total number of units they feel is appropriate at Ponte Vista.

It is correct, just, and important to ask questions. If those questions offend folks, then perhaps they should supply reliable answers.

Here are some questions: I have heard that Bob has not formally amended his application from 2,300 units down to 1,950 units. Is he going to? Shouldn't he be required to?

I think we all should look into the facts about this, as I intend to do.

The other blogger seems to have the ability to know everything about everything and is correct 100% of the time. The other blogger is more experienced at blogging than I am, and that is a fact.

This blog started out as a fluke, a trial, an experiment, and as something I would have never expected it to become. I will keep trying to inform folks as best as I can about facts, issues, data, and ideas concerning Ponte Vista. But as the other blogger uses rage so many times at me and supporters of R1, complete with rampant name calling, I wonder if the other blogger isn't just too emotionally involved with his reputation and Ponte Vista, to have a really reasonable, realistic, responsible, and respectful view on this very important issue?

What really is that fellow hiding?


Anonymous said...

This is the resolution that will open tomorrow night's NWSPNC meeting:
RESOLVED, that the Northwest San Pedro Neighborhood Council will only support proposed development plans that minimizes the overall impact to the Northwest San Pedro community in the categories of traffic, city services, crime, air pollution & local school attendance; and be it further
RESOLVED, that the potential impacts of any proposed plans for the Ponte Vista property will be subjected by this neighborhood council to objective comparison to the impacts likely to occur if the property were developed under the current R-1 zoning; and be it further
RESOLVED, that it is the expectation of the Northwest San Pedro Neighborhood Council that Bisno Development or any subsequent buyer/developer of the Ponte Vista property have the capabilities & the industry knowledge to propose a development plan that meets or exceeds this neighborhood council’s expectations in each of the aforementioned categories and be able to create an overall development plan that details how the proposed layout, housing mixture, amenities, retail use (if any), and other proposed features will benefit the community and impact it as much as or less than development of the Ponte Vista property under the current R-1 zoning.

If you notice, it goes beyond the short-sightedness of just saying "R-1 or nothing" and actually holds both Bisno Development and the R-1 interest group to get out of their cement shoes and come up with a plan that addresses more of the communities concerns.

I suspect neither group will budge, and the City Council will have to default to the requirements of your Democratic-led legislature to provide more "affordable housing". Thanks Betty Karnette!

M Richards said...

The prior comment was posted by "Anonymous" and until I actually read what Northwest will put up as a resolution, I have placed it on this blog because I don't like censorship, but the validity of the resolution contained in the comment is still in question.

However, it looks a little like a decent resolution to me, but I am not pleased with the last paragraph. It actually assumes that their will be no movement at all by reasonable folks on the R1 side IF something can actually be done with Bob. Since I am still less than two months removed from being someone who wanted compromise, I feel that reasonable, realistic, responsible, and respectful individuals on all sides of the issue can hopefully, finally get together on a development that could work.

I will not however, even consider any size of development larger than approximately 1080 units, and that is my PERSONAL opinion and not an opinion of any other member of R Neighborhoods Are 1, or any other person stating they want to keep the current zoning the same at Ponte Vista.

If the author of the prior comment is actually the wonderful Betty Karnette, I wish she would Email me and we can communicate about how she may be able to assist the situation.

Thanks. Mark Wells