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Revision in Palo Alto's land-use bible paves way for transitional housing

Original post made on Dec 22, 2022

In a show of support for a proposed transitional housing project near the Baylands, the City Council voted this week to revise the designation of land that is currently marked for "public conservation."

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, December 21, 2022, 2:09 PM

Comments (7)

Posted by MyFeelz
a resident of JLS Middle School
on Dec 22, 2022 at 8:07 am

MyFeelz is a registered user.

The Bible According To King Stanford. Old testament, Leland 1:1: "Yeh, tho I plow far from things that smell bad, it shall be such that those places will be the only location we will allow the poorest among us to exist". Can I get an Amen.

Years ago if you drove up 99 from Fresno (though, that is a theoretical improbability for most PA residents) as you got near Manteca you had to close your car windows to fend off the odor of Bull Crap. It wasn't as bad going south from Stockton in that direction (another improbability for most PA residents) but Manteca had lots of farms. Now that the farms have been paved over for residential development, the odor is only present on a really hot day when the wind is blowing.

I don't know how they're going to improve the scent of Baylands, except to bottle it and sell it as an exclusive scent only Royalty can afford. 88 apartments won't have a big enough footprint to pave over the smell. Give the profits of the sales of the perfume to the residents. Seed money, to help them get out of poverty. The smell is noxious and obnoxious and pervasive and mostly, an insult to poor people who surely would HAVE to plan on transitioning out of it, or die trying.

Posted by mp_resident
a resident of Menlo Park
on Dec 22, 2022 at 12:28 pm

mp_resident is a registered user.

The misuse of this parcel of conservation land is consistent with the situation in the other areas of the Baylands that have not been maintained to their intended purpose - to provide habitat for migrating birds and other wildlife and a natural environment for visitors. Sadly, Palo Alto has not lived up to their commitments to remove invasive plants, maintain water levels in marshes that support migrating birds, and plan for the future where rising sea levels will impact shoreline development. The transitional housing is a worthwhile cause, but should be built with the greatest sensitivity to avoiding night-time lighting, noise, and impacts on the Bay Trail and ponds.

Posted by Rebecca Eisenberg
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Dec 24, 2022 at 12:00 pm

Rebecca Eisenberg is a registered user.

I am grateful to Councilperson Greer Stone for being such a consistent, strong voice on behalf of treating our unhoused neighbors with dignity and respect.

Now can we *please* work on banning leaded fuel from the Palo Alto Airport so that the residents of this LifeMoves HomeKey project are not given lead poisoning? As a reminder, Palo Alto's unnecessary and toxic Airport, which serves almost exclusively private planes for billionaires and large corporations, has been poisoning our neighbors in EPA for years due to its insistence on using toxic leaded fuel. This is causing irreparable harm to both people and planet.

Speaking only for myself, but wearing my Water Policy cap, leaded fuel waste often makes its way into the waterways, and costs enormous amounts of taxpayer money and staff time to clean it from our water supply. This is in addition to the environmental harm that lead fuel unavoidably causes to this sensitive habitat. The HomeKey project is unlikely to cause material harm to the environment, especially in comparison to the Palo Alto Airport, which is actively killing living things with lead poisoning. We need to stop this airport's inexcusable use of leaded fuel immediately, on behalf of our neighbors to the east of 101 and all of us.

Center for Environmental Heath:
Web Link

Exposure Map:
Web Link

Posted by resident3
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Dec 24, 2022 at 12:45 pm

resident3 is a registered user.

@Rebecca Eisenberg,

"Now can we *please* work on banning leaded fuel from the Palo Alto Airport"

Thanks to the Center for Environmental Health for their lawsuits calling for companies to provide safer alternative fuels (2014 settlement) Web Link this is not a theoretical effort or starting from scratch, there are alternative fuels.

The City of Palo Alto could be leading on the transition; no excuse for delays after federal and local regulators have been aware of this for so long but allowed airports to indulge in fighting to not change. The EPA is *finally* also acting on it, with a proposed endangerment finding. Web Link

Posted by Jennie Warner
a resident of Barron Park
on Dec 27, 2022 at 7:37 am

Jennie Warner is a registered user.

I concur with MyFeelz..resituating the homeless down at the baylands is inhumane.

Other possible alternatives: (1) having the PACC work with motel operators along ECR to arrange housing for homeless individuals, (2) turn Foothills Park into a Duveneck [sic] Ranch environment with hostels for the homeless, (3) create a Palo Alto Baylands Homestead Act whereby after five years of maintaining an assigned section, the homeless individual gains ownership to it.

Posted by Crescent Park Rez
a resident of Crescent Park
on Dec 27, 2022 at 4:43 pm

Crescent Park Rez is a registered user.

@Rebecca Eisenberg. The City of Palo Alto has been working with the airport and the owners of the fleet there regarding this issue for some time and it appears that all parties are on board with the idea. Check the City's webpage for the latest update of this issue. And, remember, the City cannot "ban" the use of leaded fuels for aircrafts. That falls to EPA. It would be an over-reach of authority for the City to try to ban it. And, EPA will likely do it in 2024 and will probably provide an exemption for older aircrafts (think historical planes used in air shows) that cannot use one of the newer alternatives. Who remembers having to add lead to an old VW bug's fule tank after filling it with unleaded gas back in the 90's? Same issue with some older aircrafts.

Posted by Alice Schaffer Smith
a resident of Downtown North
on Dec 30, 2022 at 8:52 pm

Alice Schaffer Smith is a registered user.

Why do we take what should be open space at the Baylands and turn that into housing so that these unhoused residents are further removed from the main streets of Palo Alto? This seems nuts to me. Why aren't we housing Palo Alto's unhoused between 280 and 101? Let's stop marginalizing further those who are already marginalized. We need a better solution.

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