Town Square

Top five trends of 2012

Original post made on Jan 2, 2013

If there is one trend that has shaped Palo Alto's most fervent debates of 2012 it's the city's push to encourage dense development near major transit stations -- namely, downtown and near California Avenue.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Sunday, December 30, 2012, 1:55 PM


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Posted by 355 Lytton
a resident of Downtown North
on Jan 2, 2013 at 11:31 am

Is the Lytton Gateway building on Alma St & Lytton Ave really going to give the Chamber of Commerce reduced rent on the first floor because it is supposed to be nonprofit?
Pat Burt and Greg Scharff voted for that. I hope the Chamber has more sense now that AT&T is on its board. It could be a Public Relations disaster.

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Posted by T. Peak
a resident of Downtown North
on Jan 2, 2013 at 11:50 am

Palo Alto residents shouldn't buy the city's hype about "transit oriented development". Large developments are just a give away to developers and a disaster for residents. From an environmental perspective, developments should be limited to dense urban centers. We have two, San Francisco and San Jose. Developers don't care about the environment or transit, they want to maximize their property value, make as much money as possible and are fine with destroying the character of smaller cities along the peninsula. 2013 will be the year to stop massive developments in Palo Alto or the quality of the city services, schools, parks and home ownership will continue to decline.

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Posted by Barron Parker
a resident of Barron Park
on Jan 2, 2013 at 12:22 pm

I find Greg's warning to Portland:

"I think Portland needs to watch out. We're going to be the No. 1 bike city."

somewhat premature. Presumably this is based on the $10M bridge over 101 that may be constructed in 3 or 4 years. That bridge is only a very small part of the incentives to use your bicycle in Palo Alto.

As an avid bicyclist, I find that the biggest obstacle to using the bicycle instead of a car for shopping is the lack of decent bicycle stands that allow locking with strong U-shaped locks (instead of relatively weak and inconvenient cable locks).

The best bike stands have a tray for a wide front tire and an arm with a loop coming up at about a 60 degree angle, so the lock can go through the loop and the bicycle frame.

These need to be installed throughout all the commercial areas of the city. Even 1000 of them would cost only a tiny fraction of the bridge, and would have a much bigger effect on bike ridership in Palo Alto.

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Posted by dan
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jan 2, 2013 at 5:41 pm

I see bigger obstacles to an increase in bike use besides a safer locking stand.

The first is their inconvenience in wet weather - either in a rain storm or afterwards on slippery streets. Many older and younger people are not experts in riding bikes.

The second is difficulty in carrying large or several parcels. Baskets on front or rear are not a cure all for many due to the shifting of weight and balance.

And not least the lack of size and hence visibility to drivers - especially when the bicyclist blows through a stop sign.

I almost forgot. When accompanying young children to and from school or shopping, there is no safety seat as there is in a car.