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Employment is Bad

February 10, 2012

When I lived in the Bay, East Palo Alto was the place you only went to when you were lost or had a death wish.  It’s since started to become a “reclaimed” community, though there’s still not a lot to say for it.  So what would be better than to bring traffic to the city in the hopes that business could grow?  Apparently, not bringing any traffic would be better.

The draft report does admit a “significant and unavoidable impact” on the overall traffic caused by the expansion “because much of the city and surrounding areas are built out” and widening roadways would require property acquisition, according to the report.

It also adds “potentially significant” traffic to the intersection of University Avenue and Donohoe Street in East Palo Alto, the report wrote, which Council Member Carlos Romero said is only one of the “burdens” East Palo Alto would need to cope with.

However, many Menlo Park residents don’t share East Palo Alto’s concern. Facebook moved from Palo Alto to Menlo Park to gain more space for the company’s long-term growth, and it appears to have already won favor from the local community.

Yea, Menlo figured this out.  When you have people, you get business.  When Sun left Menlo park, business went down in that area, and the local economy suffered.  Now that Facebook is moving into that building, the business prospects are coming back.  Local restaurants get more lunch traffic, there’s room for coffee shops and breakfast.  Local shopping gets a shot in the arm as people need stuff… local business benefits from an influx of workers in a larger business.

Speaking at both cities’ meetings, Andrew Boone, a bicycle activist from the Silicon Valley Bike Coalition, a cycling advocacy group, urged both cities to add bicycle-trail improvements, including closing the one-mile Bay Trail gap between Menlo Park and East Palo Alto. Boone said the gap creates a safety problem as it forces cyclists to take a two-mile detour that includes a state highway and a long series of congested residential streets. For months, he has been lobbying Facebook to pay for improvements and is trying to convince both the company and the cities that it’s “a win-win strategy.”

But it appears here that all we’re seeing is whining that traffic increases and no bike paths, and they’ll probalby start asking if the shuttle from the CalTrain will run on renewable energy resources… yes, this is why I moved from California.

None of this is bad, by the way.  I just wonder where priorities are placed when an influx of business is automatically traeated as the devil.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 10, 2012 11:18 am

    Because traffic, or more specifically the automobiles, is the worse thing that can happen to quality of life. At the same time, cities are good and small towns are bad. And no way we are building new roads either.

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