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As new housing laws take effect, Palo Alto plays zone defense

Original post made on Dec 8, 2021

Responding to new state laws that seek to encourage housing in single-family zones, Palo Alto adopted a suite of new rules that city officials say will help them preserve local control and retain neighborhood character.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, December 7, 2021, 2:05 PM

Comments (6)

Posted by Ann
a resident of Community Center
on Dec 8, 2021 at 11:03 am

Ann is a registered user.

Do we want children and schools in Palo Alto or just more big lots with single homes? Or maybe we should have some multi story buildings with condos . I lived through one schools closing does any one remember? 4 schools within
in my .


Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Dec 8, 2021 at 11:15 am

Online Name is a registered user.

The "big" lots are in Los Altos, Portola Valley, Atherton, etc. which are totally immune from this type of development because they have few if any jobs!

Thanks to unelected ABAG and all the "housing" advocates for working so hard to turn Palo Alto into the ugly look-alike mess that El Camino's become with little or no provision for BMR or affordable units. The developers thank you.

Too bad about Palo Alto's charm. If I'd wanted to live in a boring development, I'd move to Florida for a fraction of what I pay here for the same ugliness but with more privacy, less congestion, better parking and lower taxes.

Thank heavens the developers and tech whales get to continue their never-ending expansion adding tens of thousand MORE workers each YEAR than housing so housing prices never drop because there will always be more people than homes.

Read up on the huge office complexes being built and bought daily!

At least their execs can live on their pristine 1-acre+ homes in Los Altos Hills, Portola Valley and Atherton and are immune from this mess.

Re offices, didn't Palo Alto collect 3,000+ signatures for a ballot initiative to cap office growth?? Why are we still building offices??


Posted by Consider Your Options.
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Dec 8, 2021 at 12:16 pm

Consider Your Options. is a registered user.

"I am stunned that we are contemplating insisting that garage doors should match the material, color and panel design pattern of the entry door or window fenestration." for once I agree with CM Cormack. Eichlers, and there are many hundreds of Eichlers in Palo Alto, were originally designed NOT to match this way. Garage doors carry the siding across the planar facade. Maybe she lives in an Eichler, so she gets this. Does this new rule mean I have to change the garage portion of my original Eichler if I remodel?

Kelsey Banes gives no credit to this community for the duplexes and affordable housing that exist and that are being built right now. It's hard to take her hyperbolic statements seriously.
There are no McMansions in my neighborhood, but we do have condos, townhouses, and ADUs. We also have two affordable senior complexes nearby and one affordable housing apartment building within a 1/2-mile and one affordable apartment building coming across the street. Not everyone who lives in Palo Alto is rich. We are a built out community. Property is held by private interests. Getting housing of any kind built is simply not easy. SB9 was poorly written legislation. It should have attached housing infill to transportation and infrastructure funding to support that housing. All sticks, no carrots--an unfunded mandate that will create real problems for many communities, including Palo Alto. Bad law.


Posted by toransu
a resident of Barron Park
on Dec 9, 2021 at 4:42 pm

toransu is a registered user.

You people are actual ghouls. Your aesthetic preferences don’t trump the ability of people to afford to live here. The absolute audacity; you should all be ashamed of yourselves. You’d be the first people to complain about local mainstays like the Prolific Oven closing due to how hard it is to find workers who will drive for hours every day to get to work. But you’re the cause! You bought the house, not the neighborhood, and while playing stupid games trying to keep Palo Alto a “small town”, you’re gonna win stupid prizes! If you want to live in a small town, then move to Amador County or something. You just want to have your desserts and eat them to, and don’t like it when you have to choose one or the other.


Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Dec 9, 2021 at 5:25 pm

Online Name is a registered user.

It's ghoulish to note that there are NO provisions for affordable housing in these two bills and that their proponents have suckered you to benefit their backers? The population keeps growing 3.2 times faster than MARKET RATE housing so that's more competition which pushes up housing prices!

Facts matter.

You think developers are going to rush to create affordable housing in that environment?? It's tough enough getting them to build houses instead of more profitable offices!!

We want affordable, BMR housing for the workers at Prolific Oven etc, not more "workforce" housing for highly paid techies.

Maybe *you* should be ashamed of *yourselves* for not ensuring that the bills covered Prolific Worker staff instead of the well-paid big tech workforce, huh?

We fought to preserve the President Hotel's affordable housing units when the "pro-development" forces converted it to a LUXURY hotel.

Palo Alto is being destroyed for a lie. Housing's not going to get cheaper. Big tech's not going to stop adding millions of sq feet of office space. We're just going to get more crowded. more expensive, more congested and uglier.


Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Dec 12, 2021 at 10:38 pm

Anonymous is a registered user.

Online Name is intelligent and accurate. Thank you.


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