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NO TO SITE# 7 (Pleasanton Gateway Apartment Complex)

Original post made by Concerned resident on Mar 16, 2011

The proposed plan of a huge apartment complex (approx 3000 units) near the new Safeway on Valley avenue will have devastating effects.

1. It will ruin the natural preserve that the city has worked to rebuild. A large complex near the freeway will be inconsistent with the beauty of Pleasanton.

2. Adding high density apartments will lower the price of the homes.

3. Schools are already overcrowded and this will lead to further congestion.

4. There is a lack of public transit like Bart close to this site.

5. Traffic congestion in the area and crime will increase.

The deadline to voice concerns is this Friday, March 18th. You can stop this from happening by sending an email to the mayor Jennifer Hosterman and Janice Stern with the subject : No to site#7 (Pleasanton gateway apartment complex).

Comments (42)

Posted by here they come!, a resident of Carlton Oaks
on Mar 16, 2011 at 9:45 pm

Dear Concerned resident: As dreadful to you as the thought of an apartment complex may be, this may be one of the very few options open to teachers who desire to live in an upscale community with good schools. I realize some posters on these PW sites liken teachers to criminals, but I really doubt you'll have too much to worry about. If you're broad-minded enough to trust teachers with your kids during the day, perhaps you should trust them to be decent neighbors too?

Posted by Beth, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 16, 2011 at 9:57 pm

We live on a short street with seven houses on it. Three are occupied by Pleasanton teachers (one retired, two current). I was just having this discussion on another thread, but most of the teachers in Pleasanton do pretty well (45% make $89,787 to $98,045 and only four make less than $60K). I don't think it is the teachers that we are worried about.

Web Link

Posted by Arroyo, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 16, 2011 at 10:15 pm

"Here they come"

Who said we trust teachers with our kids during the day? Don't we HAVE TO send our kids to school? (Just kidding -- Always liked teachers, just dislike teacher's unions.)

Of course, if you move to Pleasanton and want to fit in you'll have to vote for the Democrats, abhor developers and coporations, hate guns, own a tie-dyed outfit, learn the words to "Kumbaya", wish you could have seen a passenger pigeon before they became extinct, dislike progress of any kind, and vote against all construction projects that exceed 18 inches in height.

If that sounds like your personal profile, then welcome to P-Town. Good luck.

Posted by here they come!, a resident of Carlton Oaks
on Mar 16, 2011 at 10:21 pm

"I don't think it is the teachers that we are worried about."

I believe you. Your posts on the other site make your position amply clear. You clearly are not worried about teachers; nor am I certain you care much about quality education in Pleasanton either. My point is that a lot of hard-working, decent families, including teachers, who don't make enough to afford a home in Pleasanton, may want to rent in order to avail their kids of a better school environment than that which exists in low-income communities.

Oh, and I think the comments from yourself and Concerned resident pretty clearly imply who it is you ARE worried about entering your neighborhood. (See Pleasanton's ethnic demographics.)

Posted by Preserve neighborhoods, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 16, 2011 at 11:36 pm

Well I certainly do NOT want EXISTING neighborhoods ruined ! ! So the choice is destroy existing family neighborhoods or natural habitat.

Posted by Preserve neighborhoods, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 16, 2011 at 11:42 pm

I'll be damned, we will not further subsidizedd teachers. Either it's by income, or it's not. Rich public employees are able to SPEND every penny , every month, no need to fund 100% retirements like all the REST OF USE ! NO more subsidizing. We have to do without food if we to fund OUR REITIREMENTS, and unemployment fund.
I'm sick of your whining !

Posted by here they come!, a resident of Carlton Oaks
on Mar 16, 2011 at 11:44 pm

Oh, Steve. Have a nice glass of warm milk and tuck yourself in beddy-bye.

Posted by Get it right, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 16, 2011 at 11:46 pm

Preserve neighborhoods- seems like I'm subsidizing your retirement- social security and medicare! You pay into it you say....hmmmm teachers pay into their retirement as well. Seems like your whining is full of false information. Turn off Fox news, theyre lying to you!

Posted by Observer, a resident of Downtown
on Mar 16, 2011 at 11:47 pm

Beth is pulling her numbers and her thoughts, out of thin air. She definitely has an agenda, and she is not stopping at anything to convince people, otherwise.

Posted by footsie malone, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 17, 2011 at 12:06 am

Preserve neighborhoods!!! CAN YOU WHINE A LITTLE LOUDER??? I CAN'T QUITE HEAR YOU!!!

Posted by Beth, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 17, 2011 at 12:11 am

Actually I am pulling my numbers from the Pleasanton Unified School District website, and so can you. I provided the link last time as well. If you don't like my direct link, then go to the PUSD site, and then click Business Services/Budget Information, then select Scattergram for Certificated Employees.

Web Link

But you already knew that.

Posted by three-toed jack, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 17, 2011 at 12:28 am

I for one believe you, Beth. I myself live on a long street. One of my friends told me he has a teacher friend who has a couple of kids and who would love to live in Pleasanton and would jump at the opportunity to rent. Face it, kid, unless you want to start building walls and fences, diversity is here and isn't going away anytime soon. The challenge is to learn how to accept it and turn it into a positive. In this respect, it might not be such a bad idea if P-town kids had a bit more diversity in their lives. It also wouldn't be such a bad idea if wealth were distributed a bit more fairly, thus alleviating some of the frustration and desperation of those who occupy the lowest rungs of the income ladder.

Posted by three toes, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 17, 2011 at 12:39 am

I apologize Stac -- um, I mean, Beth. Since I didn't provide any numbers in my most recent post, I guess I didn't give you much to work with.

Posted by Beth, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 17, 2011 at 1:09 am

Tell your friend that according to the census in 2000 there were over 6,000 apartments in the city of Pleasanton, so nothing is stopping them. And if he/she works for PUSD, they can certainly afford it.

Posted by earn it, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 17, 2011 at 2:11 am

Hey look, as great as Pleasanton is, it wasn't my absolute first choice for a place to live but it was (and is) the best place *THAT I CAN AFFORD*. It never crossed my mind to go sue Blackhawk or Alamo for the right to some cheaper housing. I guess my mind is wired all wrong in sort of a 'live within my means', capitalistic mentality. I also didn't get the communist memo.

Other people I know who can't afford to live in Pleasanton actually do something known as *LIVING SOMEWHERE CHEAPER* which has always made sense to me.

Don't bring teachers into this. They wouldn't even come close to qualify for the 'low income' housing that is being proposed/zoned.

Oh yeah, I drive 50 miles a day round-trip for work, and my wife BARTs just as far, because Pleasanton is a lot nicer place to live than where we work. Just because someone lives here doesn't mean they have to work here. See how that works. I presume it works the other way around where people who don't live here could still work here... Hmmm, novel thought. They might pine to someday be able to afford it - but I'd like a mansion on the ocean. I however, realize my limitations, and for those who can't afford to live nor work here there are plenty of other nearby options for you until you can afford it.

Don't dilute my property value and quality of life because you can't pay market rate (admission price).

Posted by twinkle toes tommy, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 17, 2011 at 3:23 am

Hey, chump, capitalism's over. (See 1929 crash, your hero Herbert Hoover, and subsequent Roosevelt Administration.) You may wish it wasn't so, and you can whine about all you want to. It was a myth; never was any such thing as an even playing field. Capitalists themselves pounded in the nails of the coffin. The logic of capital does not permit a middle class; only winners and losers. (See small businesses being driven out by Staples and Walmart and Home Depot.) But now we're really not talking about capitalism are we? We're talking about how you wish Pleasanton was more like aparthied South Africa. And oh how it galls you the President we have, doesn't it? And now as 'preserve neighborhoods' suddenly you've become an environmentalist, eh? Right. Well get this straight bro: I'ze black, baby; and I'ze movin' inta your neighborhood.

Posted by twinkle toes, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 17, 2011 at 3:27 am

Hey Beth, you's a showin' your true color. 6000 an' countin', sista; and there's gwuanna be more.

Posted by SteveP, a resident of Parkside
on Mar 17, 2011 at 8:35 am

SteveP is a registered user.

here they come: "very few options open to teachers who desire to live in an upscale community with good schools"
2 things here that should concern readers about this statement: 1) why is this about teachers, unless maybe you're a teacher and this is all about you? If where you can afford to live is so important to you, maybe you should find work elsewhere in a higher paying field; 2) desire to live in a upscale community? that is not a right, it's a priviledge and requires hard work, luck and sacrifice. It's not for everyone, just like home opwnership is not a right and not for everyone.
Thee are apartments in Dublin and San Ramon with vacancies just a short drive (or bus ride) away. What's wrong with taking public transit? Not upscale enough? What's with the entitlement mentality?

Posted by SteveP, a resident of Parkside
on Mar 17, 2011 at 9:41 am

SteveP is a registered user.

twinkle toes tommy, aka Al Sharpton. What's with the race baiting? Out of logical ideas? Are you inferring that 'diversity' = poverty?
You sure hold your people in high regard. Must be that victim mentality and a lifetime of govt handouts that lead to your lack of self esteem. I'm sure you could do better....if you try.

Posted by pigeon-toed charley, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 17, 2011 at 9:43 am

Please, sir. I would like some more.

Posted by Jacquelyn R., a resident of Birdland
on Mar 17, 2011 at 11:22 am

Well said "Earn it." While I'm sure my husband as well as I would LOVE it if we were able to afford to live where we both work in Menlo Park and perhaps we could if we were willing to make a few sacrifices. Growing up on the Peninsula and now having to move away from friends and family was trying at first but then we's strictly a matter of peoples perception as to where they live vs. what they can afford and as to what they consider the quality of life intangibles in that area.

Every community in the Bay Area, California and the US has it's base price of admission. Just where is it written that ANY town MUST provide housing for all income levels? This is not an elitist, racist or mean-spirited attitude but simply a matter of economics. Why some people choose to use this as a means to race bait the trolls out in the blogosphere out there into spewing their vile hatred towards anybody with a larger flat screen, bigger car/house than they have is simply petty and shows your insecurities to us all.

Live within your means, wherever that means you live.

oh yeah, Happy St. Paddy's Day!

Posted by Lee, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 17, 2011 at 11:38 am

Apparently Pleasanton must provide more low income housing, to meet state law. But putting everyone in one huge development on Bernal Road near the 680 freeway does not sound good to me. How about spreading the housing out over a few sites around the city? Less impact on traffic, noise etc.Transportation needs can be met with buses and Bart for those without cars. I vote NO to this one site for all the housing needs.

Posted by clubfoot mike, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 17, 2011 at 1:02 pm

"Just where is it written...?" Um, state law? See, whenever big box stores come in and enhance the quality of our lives, low-income apartment complexes are needed to house the minimum wage workers who man the sales counters. Often, however, low- to mid-income workers (e.g., teachers) who are savvy about good schools v. bad schools for their children, take advantage of the relatively low rents in order to get their children into a good school district.

Now, re. 'spewing their vile hatred towards anybody with a larger flat screen, bigger car/house than they have is simply petty and shows your insecurities to us all.' Gotta tell ya there, Jackie, when I hear wealth disparity reduced to such terms, that does indeed leave me feeling insecure, about the level of ignorance out there. People are homeless, jobless, rutted in minimum wage jobs, and here we have compassionate Jackie blaming them for being envious of her flatscreen t.v. Can we get any more out of touch with life?

Posted by ingrown toe-nail harvey, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 17, 2011 at 1:11 pm

Can someone please put Stacey to work on getting the numbers on correlations between wealth and race? Specifically, if one is, say, African American, what are the odds you'll find yourself in that 20% of the population that has gathered 93% of the nation's wealth? And among poor people -- say the lower 20%, what are the odds for being a member of that percent if you are either black or white. Earn It, Steve (as always), and Jackie seem to have a good deal of ignorance in these matters. Willful, self-serving ignorance? Probably.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Mar 17, 2011 at 1:53 pm

Stacey is a registered user.

Someone was busy last night slightly past midnight writing all those posts above, having a little conversation with themselves, huh? Bet you even used those anonymizer proxies. Too bad SteveP had to take the bait.

Posted by Erica Proudfoot, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 17, 2011 at 1:57 pm

Aw, c'mon Stacey. Get crackin' on those numbers. Surely you're not doin' anything else.

Posted by iwsstheretoo, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 17, 2011 at 6:24 pm

Lee, did you attend any of the public worshops? If you did, you would know that 17 different sites spread throughout the City are up for rezoning NOT just this site!! Only 10 acres or so of this site are under consideration for apartments. That means approximately 300 units. If you dont want apartments on this site then suggest some alternative sites that aren't on the list or have been considered because the City is under court order to get this done by late summer or face a hefty settlement cost.

Those that are concerned about the City's unfunded pension liability should be watching this to make sure it happens so Pleasanton doesn't end up with more debt.

Posted by Kaye, a resident of Val Vista
on Mar 17, 2011 at 7:52 pm

My neighbor went to the last two meetings and he swears that every site on the list will be used. Unless I am misunderstanding I don't think that's true.
Without adding comments that are unneeded, does someone know if all 15 sites will be used?

Posted by iwastheretoo, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 17, 2011 at 9:29 pm

Kaye,my understanding is that there are 17 sites identified for around 100 acres. Only 70 acres or so need to be rezoned so that its conceivable that a few sites could come off the list.

Posted by Jon Hermansson, a resident of Highland Oaks
on Mar 17, 2011 at 10:01 pm

Having attending one of the three Housing Element public workshops, it seems clear that the City has to "zone" sites for higher density housing as required by State law (and the lawsuit that the City lost over the Housing Cap). Just "zoning" this site does NOT mean it will be built. The owners, Santa Clara Development, are quite clear that it is valuable with the APPROVED OFFICE PARK. They just need the economy to improve the build and lease or sell.

So, better here, by the freeway and ACE train, and the Kensignton Apartments, versus some of the other sites in the middle of single family residential neighborhoods.

Posted by Yet Another Teacher, a resident of Hart Middle School
on Mar 17, 2011 at 10:32 pm

Yeah, welcome to Potterville.

I have nothing to say to you people except quote George Bailey:

"Just a minute – just a minute. Now, hold on, Mr. Potter. Just a minute. Now, you're right when you say my father was no business man. I know that. Why he ever started this cheap, penny-ante Building and Loan, I'll never know. But neither you nor anybody else can say anything against his character, because his whole life was -- Why, in the twenty-five years since he and Uncle Billy started this thing, he never once thought of himself. Isn't that right, Uncle Billy? He didn't save enough money to send Harry to school, let alone me. But he did help a few people get outta your slums, Mr. Potter. And what's wrong with that? Why -- here, you're all businessmen here. Don't it make them better citizens? Doesn't it make them better customers?

You, you said that they -- What'd you say just a minute ago? They had to wait and save their money before they even thought of a decent home. Wait? Wait for what?! Until their children grow up and leave them? Until they're so old and broken-down that -- You know how long it takes a workin' man to save five thousand dollars? Just remember this, Mr. Potter, that this rabble you're talking about, they do most of the working and paying and living and dying in this community. Well, is it too much to have them work and pay and live and die in a couple of decent rooms and a bath? Anyway, my father didn't think so. People were human beings to him, but to you, a warped, frustrated old man, they're cattle. Well, in my book he died a much richer man than you'll ever be."

And yes, I know the PWeekly "staff" will remove my comment...for whatever reason. No debate outside the defined limits allowed, right?

Posted by Yet Another Teacher, a resident of Hart Middle School
on Mar 17, 2011 at 10:35 pm

As long as I'm getting comments deleted, why not a two-for-one special?

Web Link

Posted by appreciative, a resident of Avignon
on Mar 18, 2011 at 12:44 am

YAT, another bulls-eye. Powerful and very fitting in context of 'defined limits'. Thanks.

Posted by fungus-footed william, a resident of Foothill Farms
on Mar 18, 2011 at 1:41 am

Steve, 'earn it' is not the only poster on this site who admires your contributions. In order to understand your musings, would you be so gracious as to tell us what you mean by entitlements? Your response would be greatly useful to me, and I'm certain others would be grateful as well.

Posted by Jill, a resident of Carlton Oaks
on Mar 18, 2011 at 9:06 am

I have not read through all of the comments. But regarding the Pleasanton Gateway site in particular:

1. That site is already zoned for commercial office space. We're going to get a big building(s) + traffic there, it's just a matter of what and when.

2. All of the new housing is not going to go in one spot. The city is looking at about 55 acres at 30 units/acre plus 14 acres at 23 units/acre. I think the Pleasanton Gateway site is about 20 acres.

3. If I was a single parent, my salary + three kids would put me in the low-median income bracket for the area. If something happened to my husband and I had to support four of us on my salary alone, this is housing that I would be thrilled to have as an option.

4. I am concerned about the effect of additional kids on Hearst and PMS. But I understand that enrollment numbers are leveling off at Hearst, at least, and if class sizes don't go back to 20:1, the school has empty classrooms.

Posted by reasonable, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 18, 2011 at 10:14 am

While I agree that the "price of admission" can legitimately vary between communities, there are (and should be)choices that involve space vs. commute vs. quality of schools vs. price. I see no reason that choosing an apartment in an area with high quality schools or closer to work is any less valid than choosing to move farther away from work to a less expensive area where you can buy a big house. Having a stock of apartments in Pleasanton only increases the choices that people have. If they would rather take their modest income and move to Stockton and live in a big house, or to Palo Alto and live in a converted garage, well, those are choices too.

The residents of these new apartments will likely include single parents, public service workers and recent college graduates. Don't you know anyone who fits that profile? And do they really scare you that much?

Being next to the freeway, they really won't add that much to city traffic since many will just hop on to the freeway to drive to work or BART.

Posted by Against site7, a resident of Carlton Oaks
on Mar 18, 2011 at 1:48 pm

I am a 6 year resident of Pleasanton and the potential rezoning of site #7 near the new Safeway for high density low income housing has me very concerned.

One of the primary reasons I moved to Pleasanton was because of the potential of the empty land in and around Valley ave...I expected and still expect the city to build a world class park with many features..I never expected that the city would even consider rezoning this land for residential use, much less high density residential use. Not only does this go against what the city has been talking about this piece of land for years but to even consider putting high density low income housing next to a showcase Safeway and one of the primary first views of the city that people see as they come off the Bernal off ramp is just crazy.

Here's a summary of the situation hopefully will help you write up your comments easier but you are highly encouraged to read the info from these links:
Web Link
Web Link

Posted by Ann, a resident of Val Vista
on Mar 18, 2011 at 4:54 pm

The City never expected to re-zone parts of Hacienda Business Park for residential either, but market forces brought it about.

I think that the Valley/Bernal location is a perfect place to put higher density housing. Just as Stoneridge and Foothill was for condos in the 1980s.

It is close to transportation, a new market is opening in the area, it is closer to downtown than a lot of neighborhoods and and there is a great walking trail nearby. The housing already on the Bernal property has small lots, which means that higher-density housing will fit in.

Posted by Against site7, a resident of Carlton Oaks
on Mar 18, 2011 at 7:33 pm

Ann, your missing the whole point for the vary reasons you argue your point of view. Site7 has the potential to be a destination point as it was intended...not to be turned into apartmentsville. There are already enough condo and apartment complexes right next to the school and even closer to downtown. We don't need more apartments there...we need businesses and park land as it was destined to be. You say market forces brought it about....what brought it about is a lawsuit, not market forces...the economy is getting better and will continue to do so. The developer can eventually build it as intended. There is so much potential at site7...condemming that land to apartments is small minded and ruining a showcase Safeway and first views of the city that people have when exiting Bernal. Yes, property values will also go down...but that's also small minded view...the bigger picture is that you would not spoil a perfect meal/home/car whatever analogy you choose with an inferior component. Your only as strong as your weakest point and that is what apartments would be to this site. They will ruin a perfect piece of land.

Posted by curious, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 18, 2011 at 8:37 pm

againstsite7, first only 10 acres out of 26 acres are proposed for apartments NOT the balance of the remaining land as Brian Arkin has suggested. This land is going to have something built on it--its not part of the park or nature preserve!! If landowners for both this property and in Hacienda business park could see a point for commercial building in the near future, they wouldn't be asking to have their land rezoned. Valarie Arin, President of the School Board isn't saying anything, but the reality is that the school district is going to need to redistrict attendance areas as they did some 10 years ago to balance attendance at the elementary schools.

Posted by Impeach Jennifer Hosterman, a resident of Danbury Park
on May 4, 2011 at 10:49 pm

Impeach Jennifer Hosterman! No more low income housing!!!! Let's just pay the fine like Danville. Given the housing market, do we really need to build more houses? Scott Trobbe, from South Bay Development company doesn't care if he ruins Pleasanton (he's a rich guy from Los Gatos who isn't part of our residential community). All he and Jennifer Hosterman see is money first, truth second (or never).

Concentrated LOW INCOME does result in higher violent crime (ask your own PD department, IF VIOLENT CRIME increases by introducing "High Density Low Income housing" they know the truth...I asked them and they all told me "YES!"). However, the housing authorities refuse to acknowledge that their "benevolent actions" of building high-density low income housing screw the rest of us and make us the victims of crime. The housing authorities and the "Task Force" will never admit that their work ruins communities and the majority of low-income welfare cases are forever parasites of society who feel entitled to government assistance. I say to the Parasites, "Get to work and EARN your right to live here! No one gave me anything, I work for everything I own." Low-income non-parasites are okay - like old people. I am totally cool with old people.

Posted by Site7, a resident of Ruby Hill
on May 4, 2011 at 11:11 pm

I feel really bad for the Site 7 folks as I watch this whole drama unfold. When I saw the criteria I had to gasp! You got sucker punched by "old Pleasanton money" living on the East Side.

Top 10 Requirements for being considered a Site for High Density Low Income Housing:

10) Address must be on Bernal
9) Address must be on Valley Ave
8) MUST be close to the fair! Everyone is entitled to have fun!
7) Must not have been part of the original "Gateway" Plan. Let's face it, "GETAWAY" Plan just sounds better.
6) Must be planning to build a Safeway. Everyone must eat. Let's make it a "payment optional Safeway".
5) Must be close to 680, because even though we say people will work in town, they need to get on 680 for their job (seriously? If the 4 families living in one dwelling had jobs - hmmm)
4) Must be able to ignore the Pleasanton Citizens/home owners because most are newbies and therefore they don't really count
3) Must be close to Hearst, even though PUSD already purchased and paid for new school to be built in the East Side.
2) Must NOT be on the east side. How can we build on the East side when there is no plan? Let's build on a side that HAS A PLAN and let's destroy that plan.

and the #1 reason for selection is

1) You must be a site number between 6 and 8

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