News


Guest Opinion: It's time for teacher housing at Cubberley

Dual use at community center would be an investment in quality schools, community

The 35-acre Cubberley Community Center in south Palo Alto is jointly owned by the city of Palo Alto and Palo Alto Unified School District. File photo by Veronica Weber.

The Cubberley co-design process presents a once-in-a-generation opportunity for the Palo Alto community to envision a new future for 35 acres of publicly owned land and to make meaningful investments in our future.

While Cubberley is currently used as a community and recreation center, our community's conversation surrounding its future use need not be constrained only to recreation and community uses.


Gail Price

Steven Lee
Recreation, community and open spaces are undoubtedly important. These are among the many reasons why we and many Palo Altans chose to raise our families here. We need to continue to build upon the wonderful investments made by prior generations — to preserve, improve and expand these community assets.

While we do so, we must also keep our eyes on another ball and make investments in our world-class public schools. Quality teachers are the backbone of our public schools. The community's ability to attract and retain A+ quality teachers will hinge on whether we make the necessary investments to house our teachers.

If we fail to provide housing for our teachers, we are doing a great disservice to ourselves, our kids and future generations. Teacher housing isn't just a perk or benefit, it's a community resource that benefits us all, and it doesn't have to come at the expense of recreation and community space.

If we work together thoughtfully as one community, we can do both. By taking the time to comprehensively and carefully design the Cubberley campus, we can include teacher housing while mitigating traffic, parking, neighborhood fit and safety concerns.

To date, the city and region have failed to mitigate the impacts of decades of jobs and office growth by not building sufficient housing. Our schools are feeling the impact of this negligence. An insufficient supply of housing at all price points, makes it difficult for our teachers, as well as service workers and public sector and public safety workers to find, yet alone afford, housing in or near Palo Alto, forcing them to find housing farther way, which creates additional greenhouse gases and traffic.

Our teachers endure daily 1- to 4-hour commutes. This is time spent in cars, instead of with our kids. It's unsustainable for our teachers: It impacts their physical and mental well-being and threatens their ability to continue teaching in our schools.

It's also unsustainable for our community because it affects the health of our community, environment, economy, kids and schools, which are all inescapably tied to the values of our homes and our community vitality and desirability.

Building on public land also happens to be the cheaper and more fiscally responsible way for cities and school districts to build much needed teacher housing — that's why Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian — former Palo Alto mayor, school board president and state senator — and the county board of supervisors approved using county-owned land to build teacher housing. We've also seen teacher housing and mixed-use projects on public land done successfully in other communities.

The City and School District should not prematurely take teacher housing off the table without fully engaging our community. We prefer that Cubberley include some form of teacher housing and currently favor housing Options 3 and 4 (which include 112 and 164 units, respectively, for both teachers and other community members). While we believe there will be a strong community benefit from building teacher housing, we want to ensure that all voices and concerns in our community are heard and addressed. We ask that the City and School District take just a couple more months to conduct additional and broader community outreach and complete a financial analysis to inform how we can make teacher housing work at Cubberley.

We have the imperative to ensure teacher housing is part of any future plans for Cubberley. It's time for a bold and innovative solution that addresses multiple community needs. We imagine a beautiful, neighborhood-appropriate, compact and well-designed shared-use campus that incorporates space for a new secondary school, recreation and community programs for community members of all ages, as well as teacher housing.

It won't be easy, but nothing worth doing is ever easy. We have no doubt that in a community as dynamic and engaged as Palo Alto, that we will find sensible and fact-based ways to move forward together. We can and must do this!

Gail A. Price is a former Palo Alto School Board member (1999-2007) and city council member (2010-2014). Steven Lee is a Palo Alto Human Relations Commissioner and Midtown Residents Association steering committee member. They can be reached at gail.price3@gmail.com and stevendlee@gmail.com.

Related content:

Hear Weekly journalists discuss this issue on an episode of "Behind the Headlines," now available on our YouTube channel and podcast page.

Council clashes, compromises over housing at Cubberley

Should the school district build teacher housing at Cubberley?

Parks commission takes a stand against housing at Cubberley

Plan to build homes at Cubberley gets pushback

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Comments

23 people like this
Posted by With Density, We Can Have It All
a resident of Midtown
on May 31, 2019 at 9:56 am

Great op-Ed. This is an opportunity for the city to use public land to create desperately needed affordable housing that will enrich the community. I’ll add that in addition to teacher housing, Cubberley would seem an ideal site for affordable senior housing, given the close proximity to a wealth of services.

There is valid concern that land is scarce and Cubberley’s primary focus should be a community center and park space. We don’t want housing to take priority over community center services. The good news is, with sufficient density at this site, we will be able to fit in more community center services, open space, housing, and still have some room to grow. To make room for all the things our community values, density is the way.


52 people like this
Posted by Citizen
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 31, 2019 at 10:03 am

No, it's not time. Cubberley is a recreation resource and community center for all Palo Alto residents. It is to be preserved for all to use.

A number of posts by Trainfan to other articles have shown that the average PAUSD teacher makes more/day than the average software engineer in the Bay area. Yes, true. And yes, that includes Facebook and Google employees. Our PAUSD teachers are not low income. Pay (all of them) them more if you must, and let them choose where and how to live.

Preserve Cubberley for all to use.


11 people like this
Posted by Dishonest
a resident of Downtown North
on May 31, 2019 at 10:05 am

[Post removed.]


32 people like this
Posted by Wishful thinking
a resident of Barron Park
on May 31, 2019 at 10:08 am

Density will provide outsized profits for developers, commissions for realtors, union construction jobs, traffic, and expensive, luxury condos. It won't provide affordable housing.


21 people like this
Posted by stephen levy
a resident of University South
on May 31, 2019 at 10:12 am

stephen levy is a registered user.

Thanks for the op ed.

This is a chance for a win win solution. The designs I have seen combine housing and community uses on a small portion of the site with no decrease in community uses which will be upgraded and expanded.

While some teachers make a good salary most and nearly all staff do not make nearly enough to be able to live close to their work with our children.

Districts all throughout the region are finding ways to support housing for teachers closer to their work they can spend more time with our children.

In addition Cubberley is a great location for senior housing.



23 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 31, 2019 at 10:26 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

In the papers today is an article about the city of Mountain View buying an older apartment complex and plans to tear it down and rebuild for teachers and low income.
That is the correct approach - an older apartment in a R-2 neighborhood and redeveloping it. So if the city of PA is trying to mimic other cities then suggest it look for an older apartment and convert it - or take city owned land that is not being used and convert it. There are a lot of older apartments in the area behind the car wash on El Camino. That whole area is now under redevelopment and change and upgrade.
The Cubberely site should not have any housing - it will be needed again as a school since we plan on adding more people as residents of the city. It is not zoned as R-2. Yes it is a large site because it includes a grammar school - Green dell which is converted, plus many city services and sports activity. Focusing on that site in a do or die fashion is counterproductive. We do have senior space in the area - Stevenson House, also down the street on El Camino next to Goodwill. As opposed to the do or die approach suggest that the city planners lay out where city owned property is. There is some on the east side of 101. And do not plan on selling any city owned property to FB, Amazon, or Google. You cannot do that with out a vote of the city. So city planners - where are those pieces of city owned property that could qualify as a small apartment complex for teachers. We know where some of those are so the do or die approach here not appreciated.


55 people like this
Posted by No Housing for City Land
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 31, 2019 at 10:40 am

Poorly thought out opinion to take away our incredibly valuable community center land in South Palo Alto for other uses. What are you thinking of? This is robbing Peter to pay Paul and bad planning. It is irresponsible now and toward future generations, and if you think that you will get funding from a successful bond measure for this, you are kidding yourselves. South Palo Altans will no more vote for this than shoving a sharp stick into their heads.

Option 3 is for 64 units of school district housing on district land and 48 units on CITY land! City land! Our town only owns only 8 acres there and a 4 story square building is to go on it for some hodgepodge of school employees (on city land!), seniors, city workers or BMR. Why would these two writers approve putting school employees on CITY land? This is where the vast majority of city community life is in those spaces - artists studios, Friends of Palo Alto Library, dance studios, etc. And don't sayy - Oh - there is enough room -- it all fits even with housing. No - it doesn't fit for future needs which will be huge.

Option 4 is 64 units on pausd land, and 100 units on CITY land, with half on top of the community buildings, thereby limiting the ability to every expand up in the future when more services are needed - and they will be given the substantial projected growth in population coming to Palo Alto.

Steven Lee is running for City Council in 2020 - he just lost my vote based on showing poor judgement and playing fast and loose with city resources for residents mainly in South Palo Alto. Gail Price proved very pro development when on city council. Nothing changes.

This is a huge give-away of land we can never get back and will only need more and more and more of for cultural, recreational and city services for generations to come. We need all the 8 acres and all the potential they offer, including building up as needed, not restricted by housing on top.

There is no land like that which we already own. There is a duty of the city council to preserve valuable resources, not give them away which is what they would be doing if they change the zoning and allow housing on City owned land at Cubberly Community Center.

I have heard that a city council member said - when the time comes, we can look for other land for city services that are at Cubberly now. That is just ridiculous and impossible.

Then I watched from home the Parks and Rec. meeting this week. I was aghast to see council member Allison Comack, obviously is not a member of the Commission inappropriately act like she was, taking over the meeting on the dais, ordering up slides to be shown and holding forth, announcing that she was supporting Option 3 (above). This was a week before this Monday's council meeting where she will be voting on this issue. She had not read the staff report, heard public comment, heard discussion from other council members, yet she had unilaterally made up her mind and was announcing it at this meeting for what purpose? To sway the members of the Commission before they voted on a Colleagues Memo which supported No Housing on City Land (passed 5-1)? This is improper conduct by a council member. Is there a violation of ethics, the Brown Act, council protocol?


34 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 31, 2019 at 10:45 am

We need to subsidize teacher-specific housing? I disagree with the concept, but, that isn't the issue. If that is what the voters want to do, if we decide to do that, let's do it as part of the Fry's redevelopment. Multifamily housing of some type will be built on that site. Let's make the teacher housing part of it.

Let's NOT take a precious public "park"/recreation/community center and turn it into housing. Bad idea-- we need more, e.g., sports fields already.


37 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 31, 2019 at 11:43 am

I am totally against the idea of Cubberley being used for housing of any type.

The more housing we build, the more we will need every inch of public space for educating the new arriving children and for recreation for all Palo Alto residents. We need sports facilities, classrooms, rooms for hobby groups, senior activities, after school activities, adult classes, art and similar projects, and Cubberley must be left alone to provide these things as the Palo Alto sardine can gets more crowded.


7 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 31, 2019 at 12:17 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

I am suggesting that a good place for new teacher housing is the commercial property off Colorado Blvd on Middlefield. Leave in the section with the CVS and food stores. Gut the middle section - leave in the Walgreens. There is an empty coffee shop on the corner where the Palo Alto coffee shop can go. There are kid camps - move those to Cubberley with a good reduction in lease space. The ice cream is expendable. The shipping center can be moved to El Camino or a space at Cubberley. That set of buildings have seen better days and are not up to spec. They can fit into an area of Cubberley and have more parking and space if they want it. If most of the kid camps are at Cubberely then that whole area will result in a bigger investment and ideas for improvement. There are a lot of kids on bikes in that shopping center getting a snack. If the snack shop is moved to Cubberely then all of the kids on bikes will be there - as they should be.

Also see a church on Middlefield which appears no longer in use. That is a huge property appropriate for housing.

City Planners - obvious locations of properties which are no longer viable or are at the end of their life are sitting out there. The owners would appreciate some type of tax strategy that allows them to take credit and then no longer have to worry about a property that is no longer useful or making any money.


15 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Fairmeadow
on May 31, 2019 at 12:44 pm

The school district should build teacher housing for one reason - they think it is the best way to recruit and retain teachers vs the other tools they have (such as salary, etc.). It doesn't have anything to do with "what the community wants" - it's what will actually benefit our students.

As far as I know, they haven't done the analysis to figure that out. Do they even have a retention / recruiting problem? Aren't they one of the top payers in the state? Don't they have dozens (hundreds?) of applicants for each open position? If they need housing, do they need 20 units or 120? Until they have the answers, op eds like this are just premature, uninformed opinions.

A totally separate question is whether the city should build senior housing at Cubberley. I can see many reasons to do so - including helping open up single-family homes for younger families. This seems much more of a question the community and elected officials should weigh on as figure out what people "want."



6 people like this
Posted by Thad
a resident of East Palo Alto
on May 31, 2019 at 1:18 pm

It is time to pay teachers a wage adequate to afford decent housing in the community they serve.


8 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 31, 2019 at 2:15 pm

Posted by Thad, a resident of East Palo Alto

>> It is time to pay teachers a wage adequate to afford decent housing in the community they serve.

Which school districts in the area are having a difficult time hiring qualified teachers?


6 people like this
Posted by anon
a resident of Evergreen Park
on May 31, 2019 at 3:12 pm

the attribution at the top of the article says:

"by Gail Price and Steven Lee, Contributors"

Does that mean that there were other writers and Price and Lee just contributed ???


9 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 31, 2019 at 3:30 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

So all kinds of arguments for teacher housing and senior housing. And trying to stick it at Cubberley. But guess what - driving around PA there are so many empty buildings.
1. How about the Palo Alto Business Park at San Antonio and East Bayshore. A vast emptiness of vacant buildings.
2. How about Elwell Court - the city has an office there so they are well aware of the available locations. Many empty offices.
3. There is supposedly a senior center at 3803 East Bayshore - asked a person and he said it was a senior adult center. Didn't see any elders, but a lot of buses.
4. Also Corporate Dr. - part of that whole complex. Yes empty buildings.
5. Then you can drive down Terminal - that is the street that runs along the Bayshore at the end of San Antonio. Buildings use to house gymboree - now closed up. Three blocks of buildings.
6. Church at 3373 Middlefield - not a person to be seen. Huge piece of property - make an offer they cannot refuse.
7. Funeral home property on Middlefield at Addison not looking very well used. Is that a project that has lost it's appeal? Kids moving on? Make an offer.
8. I am not forgetting that business complex on West Bayshore that is always for lease. - make an offer they can't refuse.

So question is based on the number of empty buildings did some get sold? Did they get sold with no advisement to the public? Is there some massive plan that needs to get discussed at this time since we are short for places for teacher's and older housing? I think it is time for full disclosure - we have a lot of property for teachers and olders. Trying to say that Cubberley is the end all - be all is not true. You cannot sell that. What you can sell is a plan to convert some unused buildings into teacher's housing since they are fully capable of getting from point a to point b. There is still that property we all argued over - Maybell. That was a good choice but tried to packing too many homes. Try an apartment complex for teacher's only. That is a sellable idea. But don' try to pack in a bunch of homes. SO people - check out your immediate area - empty, unused buildings? Marginal area that is crumbling and needs redevelopment? Check out your area.


3 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 31, 2019 at 3:46 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

This is a really great site. But has it been marketed correctly? The marketing for the total site needs to be re-thought. Kid camps at Midtown shopping center? They can do better at Cubberely. Events at Oshman that are very expensive? We can get more at Cubberley at a lower price. Children's theatre? - Only at Lucie Stern? This is not a competition - we are working different groups. Has the marketing been limited so as not to break even? Just asking. We can increase the use of the buildings and fields with better marketing.


9 people like this
Posted by Just a thought...
a resident of Midtown
on May 31, 2019 at 6:03 pm

One question is on ownership - are these units owned by the teacher or rented apartments? Is it like Stanford professors who can rent or buy Stanford faculty housing where if the teacher leaves or retires from PAUSD they must move out?


1 person likes this
Posted by Paly Grad
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on May 31, 2019 at 6:12 pm

Marissa Mayer hopes to turn the former funeral home at Middlefield and Addison into a private club.

Web Link

Hopefully some of the other locations mentioned above will be available at sometime in the not to distant future!


2 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 31, 2019 at 6:28 pm

The church mentioned in the list of "vacant" buildings is very busy on Sundays, doing church type things.


1 person likes this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on May 31, 2019 at 6:43 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

When Google moved into San Jose a Catholic Church had to be moved to a new site. They ended up with a better place that is in a less trafficked area with financial help to assimilate in the new location. Other churches in that area of Middlefield seem to have activity going on all week. It is possible that the church in question would appreciate some financial help moving to a location that is not as expansive. they are not part of a bigger national church organization so it looks like they are on their own there. That is a huge property.


1 person likes this
Posted by Marc
a resident of Midtown
on May 31, 2019 at 7:30 pm

@Resident 1-Adobe Meadows Re: Building housing in Midtown

I agree with you but if my memory serves me right, when the property was sold recently and the new owners removed
the community garden due to the rats, debris and decrepit state and there was talk about new construction,
the locals went ballistic that nothing should be done to change that location.

I'm all for putting up a 4 story building, retail on the first floor and housing on 3 stories with basement parking.
I assume that the same people that complained that deliveries to Starbucks ruined their lives would complain about this.

Then we could take the block across the street, where Kragen Auto used to be and put in a 3 story building,
Retail and 2 floors of housing. Next, the location with the shoe maker and Wells Fargo.

Next we could take the Safeway, put in underground parking, put in a new grocery store and 2 floors of housing above it.

The medical buildings along Middlefield would be next.

The single family housing along Colorado would be replaced with duplexes and then we can start changing the adjacent streets.



/marc



5 people like this
Posted by Not in our neighborhood
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Jun 1, 2019 at 7:15 am



don't put high density housing/apartments at Cubberly. Cubberly backs up against Greenmeadow. Our bylaws restrict second story homes which would defeat the purpose if we had a ton of housing at Cubberly. Please keep Greenmeadow in mind when designing Cubberly.


11 people like this
Posted by HUTCH 7.62
a resident of Portola Valley
on Jun 1, 2019 at 7:17 am

Do you really trust the Palo Alto City government?

When the old Peninsula Creamery Ice cream plant was demolished to build High density and supposedly low income housing in the early 2000’s, The developer promised it would give teachers and city employees discounted rents. Neither has happened.

And lest we forget the scandal that was Edgewood shopping center


12 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 1, 2019 at 8:58 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

I stopped into the Stanford crush meeting concerning housing. Better to get the end results in the paper - but no end results. We appear to be compartmentalizing the city issues here. Cubbereley was set up because of overcrowding at PAHS and Gunn. My son went to Greendell for 1 year only and they moved everyone over to other schools. I know that Gunn was overcrowded when he went there and that was a time ago. His uncle went to Cubbereley. So we are now talking about the increase in population which is families with kids. Does everyone expect that PAHS and Gunn are going to be able to provide a quality education when the population at those schools is overcrowded? Has the PAUSD considered what the impact is here when you keep adding children but run out of space? EPA/Menlo Park should have the same concerns with their high school - how many children an you keep bringing in and still maintain some cohesive educational system. Everyone now is raging about Charter Schools but reality says the local high schools are full up.

Cubbereley needs to be updated as it is getting worn down but it is still a high school waiting in the wings to accommodate the expected rise in population. Consider that the dealings with money rich SU could help out here as they can probably assess that PAHS and Gunn cannot accommodate the rise in population. Updating Cubbereley now can bring in good community use as it is already doing to keep the money flowing. Some help from Su to help update the campus would be appreciated since we will need to push overflow back out over all of the high schools.
Meanwhile we have areas of the city which are in disrepair or large tracts which are not being used by anyone. That is where your teachers housing and old people housing is going to go.
1. Palo Alto Business Park - the city has an office there. A bunch of empty buildings on a huge space of land. Is some one in a separate negotiation with Google or Fb concerning that land? Better that we all understand why that section cannot be broken down to add teacher housing. There appears to be some type of older people housing in the section next door where all of the busses are parked.
2. You cannot compartmentalize any one section of the city and have financial transactions which have a contrary impact to another section of the city -- in this case the families and children.
3. I am very concerned about the comments above about what promises have been made and then the reality of what happens after the fact. There ae so many red flags going up now overall between the SU, Cubberley, Palo Alto Business park, and midtown shopping center. A giant mound of unused ground in that location that you cannot even park on. Something is going on there but what is the end result? Each section is doing it's own thing but the end result is a lack of cohesive planning.
4. Add to the degradation going on El Camino where you have buildings that are empty, some boarded up. That is another section that can be rebuilt with housing for teachers and older people. What is going on in that whole area? We had many publications concerning the upgrade in that area but no results to date.
Come on city - put a total plan together that addresses all of the issues on the table so that we are not shooting ourselves in the foot here. Anyone who visits Mitchell Park can attest to the popularity of that location and use by everyone. A big piece of property used right. Let's use Cubberley right.


1 person likes this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 1, 2019 at 9:59 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

I am concerned about the comment on Peninsula Creamery. If that sold to the public as teachers and low income housing then that presumes that financing in part came from the PAUSD and city. And possibly the developer got better financing terms because of the intended purpose of the facility. So if the intended purpose of the facility did not happen then that is a legal conflict of interest. And the PAUSD, city and financing organization could be considered complicit in a cover-up.

So to correct that problem then who ever is managing that facility should be now under court order to implement the requirements of the original intent and start renting to teachers and carve out a portion for low income. So now we can say that we have provided for teacher's housing and low income. So put that in the win-win category for those topics. YEAH. YES - we have teachers housing.


2 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 2, 2019 at 9:23 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

The corner of Page Mill and El Camino. Was previously a park and go but now fenced in for a new building. Presumably that new building is for teachers and low income. It is suppose to be small cockroach size apartments but a start for teachers.
Start working the Fry's location - a portion for teachers and low income. Big ideas for Fry's but what is happening there? Lot's of locations which have been singled out but need to get going on the results.

Comment on Colorado being changed into duplexes. Those are people's homes. Changing up commercial properties is one thing - taking up people's homes is another thing. People are busy upgrading those homes as they have to sell them. Some tear-downs and replacement with larger homes. Quit messing with people's homes and start messing with commercial property's which are sitting unused or not being kept up. And that number is growing.


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Posted by Facts Please
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 2, 2019 at 10:37 am

@Resident 1
Thanks for your opinions, many of which I agree with, but please refrain from throwing out a bunch of inaccurate claims as assertions of fact. Let’s have discussions based on facts.


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Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 2, 2019 at 2:28 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

Please note that housing at Cubberley is an opinion only. It is not a fact. Any new teacher housing in the future is only an opinion - not a fact. First there has to be a discussion relative to what has happened to date - failures and accomplishments - then a discussion as to where the best solutions can be made. And some evaluation as to what else is happening on the education scene which has to be baked into the better solutions. So which assertion do you consider to be not factual? I sat in a meeting concerning SU development which was all opinion - but well founded opinion. Not yet a fact.


13 people like this
Posted by Cover-up Culture
a resident of Community Center
on Jun 2, 2019 at 10:58 pm

For full disclosure, fyi,Steven Lee, one of the authors of this editorial, defended the MAGA hat critic.


3 people like this
Posted by More questions to consider...
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jun 3, 2019 at 12:41 pm

More questions to consider... is a registered user.

So...if we add housing to the compensation package for SOME teachers, will this provide the unions a reason to negotiate for compensation package improvements for ALL other teachers? How will the union seek to rectify unequal compensation?

How have other districts dealt with this problem? Has anyone dealt with it yet? It sounds like a lot of districts are considering doing this, but have they DONE it? How did that work out with their union contract negotiations?

The PAUSD-owned 525 San Antonio site that abuts Cubberley can support teacher housing. That parcel is zoned for housing. Put it there. Save PF-zoned portions of Cubberley for public community services/schools. If they change the PF-zoning to private housing, the opportunity to use that space to expand community services and schools to meet the needs of growing numbers of residents will be lost forever. We are upzoning for housing everywhere else. Preserve this last large PF-zoned parcel for community services and schools.


3 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 3, 2019 at 12:59 pm

If we give up that public land for housing, we will never get it back for schools, community center, and recreational fields. SRP is crying out for housing. Let's put it there. Make it part of an overall plan to develop housing at SRP.


8 people like this
Posted by Greenmeadow
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Jun 3, 2019 at 1:17 pm

Please DO NOT put housing at Cubberley Community Center. Cubberley is for everyone and not just for a few people to have housing. We only have Mitchell Park and Cubberley for community space in S. Palo Alto. Everyone wants to use Cubberley because more and more housing is being built in the area and we need more common space. We used to have 22 elementary schools in Palo Alto and the land was sold and we never got the common space back.


8 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jun 3, 2019 at 2:35 pm

As a resident whose family used and continues to benefit from the Cubberley resources:
- transitional kindergarten
- ballet and dance programs
- basketball courses
- dog training lessons
- jmz temporary location
- library temporary location
- soccer field
- baseball and softball fields
All hosted at Cubberley.
I say NO.


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Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 3, 2019 at 3:40 pm

Mark Weiss is a registered user.

The Cub should be a world class cultural and educational amenity for the community, over a great place to put hypothetical future South Palo Altans.

If we build housing we should prioritize Gunn and Paly grads classes 1980, 1981 and 1882 if they put the words “Once a Cougar...” in their yearbook boxes.

:. :


1 person likes this
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 3, 2019 at 3:45 pm

Mark Weiss is a registered user.

Once we decide on a plan, we should get Train, Cake, Third Eye Blind, blink 182 and Matt Nathanson to perform there as a benefit concert and chataqua: all of them performed at Cubberley when it thrived as a music venue.
Plus, Gregg Rolie (founding member of both Santana and Journey), who went to high school there.
I’ll volunteer to organize and produce such.


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Posted by Educator
a resident of another community
on Jun 3, 2019 at 5:02 pm

@More questions to consider, two agencies have built teacher housing in our area, Santa Clara Unified and San Mateo Community College. Both have been up and running for 10 years or more. They appear to have worked out many operational kinks and the unions seem comfortable with it. Whether it is a good idea or not is an open question, but it does seem like something that can be done if desired.


6 people like this
Posted by In The Public Interest
a resident of Charleston Gardens
on Jun 3, 2019 at 10:07 pm

Wow, @Educator, it's so great the unions are comfortable with it. After all, that's all we care about...


1 person likes this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 3, 2019 at 10:52 pm

"I am concerned about the comment on Peninsula Creamery. If that sold to the public as teachers and low income housing then that presumes that financing in part came from the PAUSD and city. And possibly the developer got better financing terms because of the intended purpose of the facility. So if the intended purpose of the facility did not happen then that is a legal conflict of interest. And the PAUSD, city and financing organization could be considered complicit in a cover-up."

No, that hype about teacher and firefighter housing was pure unadulterated developer propaganda for the willingly gullible. While teachers and firefighters were not excluded from buying if they had the money, neither were they were given any financial assistance or price breaks. The city was involved only to the extent it was an eager dupe.


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Posted by Messenger
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 3, 2019 at 10:53 pm

Why are teachers deserving of housing here but service employees are not? How about senior care workers? It’s silly and possibly racially insensitive to draw the line with teachers on the inside but those who take care of us in other ways are outside.


12 people like this
Posted by Theft
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Jun 4, 2019 at 6:11 am

The problem with any public assert is that it will eventually be stolen for private gain.

Cubberly no longer belongs to the people of the City: it is fallen prey to populist theft.

Why not just carve it up, sell to the highest bidder and give the proceeds lottery-style only to a few teachers.

That’s in essence what we’re talking about. And while obscene in theft, would at least have the benefit of being more efficient.

Vote No on Theft.


6 people like this
Posted by DuvMom
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 4, 2019 at 8:05 am

Why in the world would you let a racist racist such as Mr Lee write another article for your publication? Remember the last article he wrote which should have gotten him fired?? Excusing the public hart admen this, verbal assault, and doxing of an elderly Jewish man in downtown Palo Alto. Mr Lee should not represent the city of Palo Alto nor your newspaper.


2 people like this
Posted by DuvMom
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 4, 2019 at 8:09 am

“Fascist” & “Harassment” I have to goto work, apologies for the typos:)


12 people like this
Posted by No Housing at Cubberly
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 4, 2019 at 3:22 pm

No Housing at Cubberly is a registered user.

No, it's not time for housing at Cubberly. It's zoned as Public Facilities for all to use and it should remain as such. Not to mention, these Housing at Cubberly advocates can't even get their stories straight. This op ed is all about teacher housing (while teachers in Palo Alto are doing just fine thank you). The City Council meeting last night was all about senior housing. Which is it people??? I, along with the majority of Palo Alto, will vote NO on any School Bond Measure that includes Housing at Cubberly. So all this effort to rejuvenate Cubberly and turn it into an incredible, usable, updated public community and recreation center will go down the tubes thanks to City Councilwoman Alison Cormack, Gail Price and Steven Lee (who just lost my and many other people's votes in the upcoming election). Congratulations in advance on singlehandedly tanking the Cubberly renovation project. Unless a PAUSD bond is put forth that places housing on San Antonio instead, the Cubberly renovation project is already officially history.


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Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 5, 2019 at 4:05 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

Please note that the Stevenson House in Palo Alto is managed by the John Stewart Company, a major corporation. Any housing - teacher or old people will require a dedicated corporation that is specific to that commercial and private market.
The better option is to subsidize rent at specific apartment buildings so that neither the city or school system is in direct dealings with any housing or old person organization. That is not in the charter for the city or school system.


4 people like this
Posted by DuvMom
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 5, 2019 at 4:35 pm

Steven Lee is running for City Council in 2020? He represents the worst of Palo Alto. He should be fired and the City should have made a public statement disavowing his comments excusing public harrassment.


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