New homes, parks eyed for Ventura | March 8, 2019 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - March 8, 2019

New homes, parks eyed for Ventura

City Council prepares to tackle new 'coordinated area plan' for central neighborhood

by Gennady Sheyner

For Palo Alto's elected leaders, the eclectic Ventura neighborhood doesn't just represent a prime opportunity to add hundreds of apartments, condominiums and other much needed housing.

This story contains 1185 words.

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Staff Writer Gennady Sheyner can be emailed at


15 people like this
Posted by Don't give away zoning to help developers
a resident of Downtown North
on Mar 7, 2019 at 8:05 pm

Let's remember that this site is not zoned for office development or housing. It is commercial. The owner's of the property have no right to demand anything when it comes to office development or massive housing to make them more money.

This area is a resource to the residents of Palo Alto. It is the last large parcel of land in town that could be used by residents as a large park and community center in this area of town. The city is over 100 acres behind in the urban park land that it is suppose to provide to residents per the comprehensive plan. The bulk of this land should be rezoned to give residents a better quality of life with community spaces, playing fields and park space.

We should not add any more office development because we already have more jobs than housing in town. Further if we do build any housing it should all be deed restricted to house only people who work for the city. This way we can start to house some of the middle class people who are priced out of living in the city but who we desperately need to live close by in case of emergencies (think linemen who restore power after major storms or earthquakes, or essential personnel for the police 911 dispatch center).

We can do better than to over-build this area with massive office developments and high rise housing for overpaid tech workers. This will hurt the environment, increase traffic, overcrowd schools and community services while continuing the destruction of livability in the city.

7 people like this
Posted by lots of talking
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 7, 2019 at 10:31 pm

I wonder if people realize the only way to make the city comply with the comprehensive plan is a lawsuit. The plain fact is that this city's administration - council and planning departments - work for developers, not the citizenry.

13 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 8, 2019 at 10:36 am

Just don't let them include even 1 square foot of office space. Start letting in office space, and, the next thing you know, there will be 3000 new residential units with office space for 6000 new jobs "in order to make the development profitable". "We" have been falling for this ploy every time.

=> Not one square foot of office space. <=

1 person likes this
Posted by Check the Zoning
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 8, 2019 at 5:12 pm

The first comment is absolutely wrong about the zoning. The Fry’s site has been zoned RM-30 for a long time. That would be for medium-density multi-family residential with 16 to 30 units per acre.

4 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 9, 2019 at 1:45 pm

Posted by Check the Zoning, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood

>> The first comment is absolutely wrong about the zoning. The Fry’s site has been zoned RM-30 for a long time.

Yep. And, I would be OK if they wanted to push that to 35 units/acre if they have parking for two cars per unit and stay under 50 feet. It can be done with human-scale row houses: Web Link

Just don't allow any new office space. Zero. If a "modest" 3% of the site is allowed to go to office space, it could negate the entire effect of the new housing wrt jobs/housing. Don't let the developers pull a fast one and allow office space to make the jobs/housing imbalance worse.

9 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of Ventura
on Mar 10, 2019 at 10:58 am

If the city wants to reduce car traffic through this area, they have to provide alternative transportation options. For years, the city has been talking about building a bicycle bridge over the Caltrain tracks to connect Ventura to the Bryant Bicycle Boulevard. Is this ever going to happen? This will also be hugely useful to students bicycling from Midtown to Gunn High School (instead of the super-congested Charleston Road bike route).

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