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Transformation proposed for Palo Alto's planning department

Original post made on May 21, 2014

If the budget is an indicator of city priorities, Palo Alto's planning department should be a hive of activity in 2015. The City Council's Finance Committee on Tuesday reviewed and tentatively approved the busy department's proposed budget, though at least one council member raised concerns about a planned expansion of shuttle services throughout the city.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, May 21, 2014, 1:36 PM

Comments (5)

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Posted by Wayne Martin
a resident of Fairmeadow
on May 21, 2014 at 2:42 pm

> The budget proposed by City Manager James Keene would create a
> new Development Services Department, which would handle
> permitting, inspections and other construction-related services.
> These functions have traditionally fallen under the purview of
> the planning department.

This break-out seems like solid thinking. But the rest of what is being proposed seems pretty wishy-washy, with no clear vision in place to guide those in charge.


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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 21, 2014 at 4:25 pm

Things like traffic and shuttle services need to be coordinated with our neighbors. We probably need some type of shuttle/bus from Palo Alto residential areas to Google, to Facebook and from various south Palo Alto locations to Stanford - not just the shopping center but to the university and hospitals.

Assuming that the traffic can be solved by Palo Alto alone won't work. Much of the traffic is caused by school generated traffic and much of the remainder is either outward or inward from neighboring cities. Trying to solve traffic piecemeal isn't going to be comprehensive.


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Posted by jerry99
a resident of Barron Park
on May 22, 2014 at 10:59 am

Just adds more bureaucracy. A planning dept? More planners? NONSENSE

"At the same time, the city plans to invest(WASTE) more in what Planning Director Hillary Gitelman called a "mountain of work" in long-range planning" MORE NONSENSE We don't need that or any more deadbeat city employees with gold plated benefits staring out the windows or at their computer screens for 30 years.

Just stop building apartments, condominiums, hotels and business space in Palo Alto. How many times do the residents have to tell you they don't want any more and the city is too crowded already.

Beg Fry's to stay, it is a good business and resource and does not need any apartments or retail space in that area. Leave California Street alone, you have already done enough damage to that.

Concentrate on what Palo Alto residents want, LESS CRIME downtown at night and MORE PARKING. Stop spending money.


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Posted by StoryPlease
a resident of Palo Verde
on May 22, 2014 at 3:17 pm

As to development and growth and 'more housing' in Palo Alto, I would love to see the The Weekly / Palo Alto Online do an in depth piece on ABAG and state law as it applies to who gets to tell Palo Alto what it has to do, and what consequences there would or might be if we said "shove it" (as many folks who post here would like done). Let's try to put that issue in the light so that we can have an informed discussion, force something to be done, or else quit all the complaining.


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Posted by Yes, time for reporting
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 22, 2014 at 3:39 pm

StoryPlease,

"As to development and growth and 'more housing' in Palo Alto, I would love to see the The Weekly / Palo Alto Online do an in depth piece on ABAG and state law as it applies to who gets to tell Palo Alto what it has to do, and what consequences there would or might be if we said "shove it" (as many folks who post here would like done). Let's try to put that issue in the light so that we can have an informed discussion, force something to be done, or else quit all the complaining."

I agree that reporting on this is overdue, and almost suspicious that nobody can pin down all the issues with substantiation.

Stephen Levy's blog has ongoing props to suggest Palo Alto is on the hook for housing the world here, and the blogs don't get very far except for people asking Why?

There are no less than three cities in the Bay area which can handle the "world" better than a town which has traffic issues because of school traffic, and that is with thousands of school kids biking already.

For any future reporting, and to all the planners. Perspective please.



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