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Research space, condo proposal heads to council

Original post made on Oct 3, 2011

Even by Palo Alto standards, Harold Hohbach's seven-year quest to build a mixed-use development featuring condominiums and research space on Page Mill Road has been a long slog, featuring five applications and two lawsuits.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, October 3, 2011, 9:50 AM

Comments (10)

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Posted by JO
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 3, 2011 at 10:34 am

OZYMANDIAS by Percy Bysshe Shelly (1918)

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said:—Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains: round the decay


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Posted by resident
a resident of College Terrace
on Oct 3, 2011 at 10:54 am

I believe the first floor would be General Manufacturing not Research in the current proposal. The delay in Mr. Hohbach"s project at this address is of his own making because he has not proposed a project that is in compliance with the existing zoning.


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Posted by Frank
a resident of Ventura
on Oct 3, 2011 at 11:10 am

Perhaps you are correct - but all this delay is more than ridiculous. It hurts our city much more than it helps us. Had he decided to build only Condominiums or monster homes there would be no problem. OK there would still be problems as NIMBY neighbors across Alma would still sue because they can.

The idea of mixed use is widely hailed as the solution to our congestion yet it is always very difficult to get approved.

This was an eyesore before, it is a vacant lot now and unless it gets approved will remain wasted space where it could be a vibrant part of our city. It's almost enough to make me vote libertarian (but not really enough).


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Posted by JO
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 3, 2011 at 11:35 am

My apologies to Shelly, I inadvertently missed pasting in the last 2 lines of his sonnet.

OZYMANDIAS by Percy Bysshe Shelly (1918)
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said:—Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,
The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains: round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.



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Posted by Cid Young
a resident of another community
on Oct 3, 2011 at 12:01 pm

It sounds like the opponents are using each opportunity to stall, as is typical in other communities as well from anti-development forces, however, the SMART GROWTH idea of creating housing near job opportunities AND transporation hubs will reduce emissions for any possible employees who might choose to take public transportation, or even residents who choose to "live upstairs" from their workplace in the condos.
Think about it, that is the best of both worlds, rather than creating yet another office park in the boonies that workers need to commute/pollute to daily.
I am not familiar with the project, but it sounds like a win-win from a distant perspective.


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Posted by resident
a resident of College Terrace
on Oct 3, 2011 at 12:04 pm

195 Page Mill is in a GM zone, general Manufacturing, which does not permit housing.


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Posted by sigh
a resident of Southgate
on Oct 3, 2011 at 12:31 pm

The Palo Alto way.


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Posted by JO
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 3, 2011 at 2:34 pm

My observation over the past 12 years has been that "the Palo Alto way" involves developers using the arguments put forth by Frank and Cid Young, along with (overt or implied) threats of lawsuits, to get the City to approve these large projects that don't conform with the underlying zoning. That is what Hohbach did in 2006 when he got the City Council to approve the project.

What is different is for residents to step up and fight back with a winning lawsuit, as Bob Moss and Tom Jordan did. Their lawsuit revealed how inadequately Palo Alto follows state law. So if Bob Moss and Tom Jordan have showed us a new "Palo Alto way," I'm all for it.




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Posted by JO
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 3, 2011 at 5:50 pm

Oops, typo. Ozymandias was first published in 1818.


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Posted by Upgrade
a resident of another community
on Oct 4, 2011 at 7:59 am

Kudos to JO for the substantial upgrade of the literary level of the posts to Palo Alto Online!

With all due respect to the posters out there, the standard posted whines of Palo Altans have no literary flair whatsoever...


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