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City Council faces pushback over Sobrato deal for former Fry's site

Original post made on Aug 2, 2022

When City Council members struck a deal with Sobrato in June to transform the former site of Fry's Electronics, they framed it as a win-win situation. Some area residents strongly disagree.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, August 2, 2022, 9:44 AM

Comments (13)

Posted by Native to the BAY
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 2, 2022 at 11:50 am

Native to the BAY is a registered user.

This area is ripe for use for housing at all income levels. Don’t can it & send the plan by packing the low hanging fruit of our past’s labor by the train car load. Make history part of the present reality. We need affordable, quality, safe housing now. We, multi generational residents of this city have worked service jobs, retail, store front biz owners (like shoe cobblers, and grocery store clerks) contributing to this town’s economy, for decades. Now certain residents desire to chew up what is a real need. Now disregard the labor force (work force housing) by demonizing and metaphorically demolishing good, sound plans for housing. Did Chew provide work force housing for his cannery crew? Once he sold it, did the new owners? So hypercritical and typical. Canned goods became a staple for families and soldiers during WWII. Guess what? We are fighting a war of a different kind now. While snobby Palo Altans demolish buying or eating canned goods. They want to honor a canned fruiting past? Bizarre times indeed.

Take part of the building over to Cubberely and use its structural and cultural value for a community center there — perfect for indoor pickleball courts or community pool.


Posted by Citizen
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 2, 2022 at 11:57 am

Citizen is a registered user.

[Post removed.]


Posted by Bystander
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 2, 2022 at 2:35 pm

Bystander is a registered user.

Very much against the idea of labeling any area as suitable for any particular race. Isn't that the exact opposite of what we want?

As for the comment about Hearst Castle, words fail me.


Posted by Native to the BAY
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 2, 2022 at 3:56 pm

Native to the BAY is a registered user.

Is the work labeling a can of fruit or a labeling a building by definition our history? We deserve honoring of this neighborhood by providing hard working service and low wage workers their due — housing for all. @Citizen (Cain) @bystander — low standard view of current need ! Honoring the past with housing is making use of the present. You woke me up by your baseless red scaring, mean tactics using words to frighten our city governance. Protect and proceed our leaders for good will prevail over the stench of fermenting stale processed thought. So last Century!


Posted by Annette
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 2, 2022 at 3:59 pm

Annette is a registered user.

"Sobrato is providing land and $5 million in fees for affordable housing and park improvements."

What is the $ value of what Sobrato is providing and how does it compare to what Sobrato gains from the deal? Something tells me that the City is not on the winning side here. The $5M in fees, is not a huge amount of money to an organization like Sobrato which is, I believe, worth billions.


Posted by Native to the BAY
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 2, 2022 at 4:30 pm

Native to the BAY is a registered user.

Lack of suitable land to put needed workforce housing isa huge win for City and its citizenry. A city hall who continue to cry land poor. Sobrato is land AND cash rich. That’s the net win win @Annette. Finally decent, quality housing plan in a perfectly suited site for for our normal wage earner families. Don’t forget to remove a portion of the production warehouse to Cubberly for use for pickle ball courts and community indoor pool! Win, win, win.


Posted by tmp
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 2, 2022 at 5:41 pm

tmp is a registered user.

2.5 acres for park space and much of it a concrete channel that may or may not ever turn into useable space is not worth adding thousands of more people to the city every day. The city is more than 100 acres of park space behind in what they claim in the comprehensive plan they want to provide for residents of the city.

There is no will among the city council to secure large open spaces for recreation and sanity of the residents they serve. We need to push back against constant growth and destruction of open spaces. Heck, at this point even a flat parking lot with a few scrubby trees is about the best open space we can count on since these spaces are now supporting giant developments.

We need more park space in this plan not more development. Where it the park space funding in the business tax measure? Not everything that city council deals with is about building things.


Posted by Native to the BAY
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 2, 2022 at 6:55 pm

Native to the BAY is a registered user.

@tmp. Hmmm. The city is 40 years behind its housing allocation. SFHomes in R1Zones with average 3 cars, big front back yards, want more open space not less, want 11 pickle ball courts and less skateboard/park activities for kids, want more police to keep the “bad” ones out and not less , want more public parking for one or more or more of their high priced vehicles - not less, want less people even though these people are already here, want less airplane noise unless personally flying to Cabo. Want less RV dwellers and more nice things to look like bees and trees and leaves of grass. Want more for you and less for our youth, want less taxes and more services for you. Just because a city ignores its housing needs for half a Century does not follow you’ll get more personal ownership and privacy than you already have. If all private homeowners gave up just six inches of their personal space, one of their cars, got active for change for the good of all — that would add up to lots of space for the many already here, struggling with a painful economy that is crushing our community like the aluminum fruit can you may , or may not recycle. How about Stanford Le(Land) giving u some of its vast acreage of land and wealth to help soften the blow we endure every day of every hour... Here’s a thought. Since Stanford recruits only about .5 % of our Gunn and Paly grads they get an escrow account for land/housing swaps. So while trying to keep our kids safe, healthy calm from the brink of climate and income disparity disasters per economics, yes yes yes to housing. Kids see these cruel despair ties in housing prices. Kids see the unhoused, the needy the poor. Can’t hide forever. Or is teaching tolerance and empathy and inclusion a dream of another era of horror. These may seem dramatic, yet my kids watching famines run out of gas on our streets is a sad, pathetic reality. It so feels like the garden of good and evil. Anyone earning less than $125Grand a year is being citizen caned in this town. Even those that have resided here in family name 100 or more years.


Posted by Native to the BAY
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 2, 2022 at 7:05 pm

Native to the BAY is a registered user.

@tmp — has anyone seen the Golden Eagle subsisting off rich peoples scraps over Stanford Research Park? Beautiful. Skies the limit in Pa. make it possible for us terrestrials. I watched the bird grow from infancy to adult. Go see for yourself. There is room if we make room.


Posted by Carl Jones
a resident of Palo Verde
on Aug 2, 2022 at 9:26 pm

Carl Jones is a registered user.

We don't need to save an old run-down cannery building. We CAN put up a plaque that details what happened at this site and why it was important. But we do NOT have to waste valuable land to keep a building that can not be made to serve for what we desperately need today. So lets get over it and move on.


Posted by Mondoman
a resident of Green Acres
on Aug 2, 2022 at 9:58 pm

Mondoman is a registered user.

To me, the former cannery building looks pretty dumpy without any attractive architectural features. @Carl Jones is right to suggest honoring the historical event itself and replace the old building with something both better-looking and more useful.


Posted by Native to the BAY
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 3, 2022 at 2:19 am

Native to the BAY is a registered user.

So brought O land O in time of desperate need ove greed. V-rent asks outlandish data sets to determine eligibility for our most vulnerable as a barter t0o. Hu


Posted by Native to the BAY
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 3, 2022 at 11:23 am

Native to the BAY is a registered user.

[Post removed; successive comments by the same poster are not permitted.]


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