OPINION: Keep the housing floodgates closed | News | PleasantonWeekly.com |


OPINION: Keep the housing floodgates closed

In order for all area residents to have important local information on the coronavirus health emergency, PleasantonWeekly.com has lifted its pay meter and is providing unlimited access to its website. We need your support to continue our important work. Please join your neighbors and become a subscribing member today.

Pleasanton's two decades of managed slow growth policies ended Monday with the City Council's final approval of a new "housing element" that will become part of the city's General Plan.

By rezoning nine separate sites totaling 73 acres throughout the city for high-density housing, the council has authorized developers to build more than 3,000 units for low- to very-low to moderate income tenants.

Add to 840 more housing units previously approved on land rezoned for two-, three- and four-story apartment buildings in the Hacienda Business Park, Pleasanton has now met a March 1 deadline imposed by the Alameda County Superior Court and the Urban Habitat affordable housing organization to require Pleasanton to meet its current state housing obligation to provide more workforce/affordable homes.

With only a few speakers at a special meeting Monday, the council's final 5-0 vote approving the housing element ordinance ended with more of a whimper than the loud protests heard two years ago after the court voided the city's 1996 ordinance that capped future residential growth at 29,000 units

That measure, approved overwhelmingly by voters, accompanied deliberate slow-growth efforts that limited new building permits to 350 a year with the state's highest development fees imposed on builders. The building spurts of the 1970s and 1980s came to an end as the late Mayor Ben Tarver and a no-growth City Council said enough's enough to both housing and population growth.

This year's council, headed by Mayor Jennifer Hosterman, largely undid those growth impediments Monday. Not because any council member or most voters want Pleasanton to become another high-density city like those along El Camino Real on the Peninsula or a thoroughfare of high-rise apartment houses and residential parking garages that we see today along Dublin Boulevard. But with their hands somewhat tied by an Urban Habitat coalition that likes what it sees in those other locations, council members are now moving cautiously toward a Growth Management policy that will still limit new permits and property densities.

This strategy, being formatted by City Manager Nelson Fialho at the urging of the council, should be ready for consideration early this summer in time for an up-or-down vote by the current council. Because of term limits, the council will lose three of its members in the upcoming municipal elections on Nov. 6.

For a City Council that has taken the heat for land rezonings to accommodate high density housing, albeit by state and court orders, a Growth Management Plan that keeps the residential building floodgates reasonably closed can come none too soon.

Pleasanton Weekly staff.

We need your support now more than ever. Can we count on you?


Like this comment
Posted by Fred A.
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 17, 2012 at 8:39 am

Well, if you had any doubts that the Publisher and Editor of the Pleasanton Weekly were a couple of left wing nuts, this opinion piece should convince you. I am now using the PW issues that I have left over from lining the bottom of my bird cage in the bathroom as wiping material. It's kind of rough on the rear, but the mental satisfaction is just great!

I'm timing this to see how long this stays posted before one of the two nuts takes it down.

Like this comment
Posted by iLovePleasanton
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 17, 2012 at 10:00 am

Even toilet paper was invented in China!

This is from wikipedia

Although paper had been known as a wrapping and padding material in China since the 2nd century BC,[1] the first documented use of toilet paper in human history dates back to the 6th century AD, in early medieval China.[2] In 589 AD the scholar-official Yan Zhitui (531–591) wrote about the use of toilet paper:
"Paper on which there are quotations or commentaries from the Five Classics or the names of sages, I dare not use for toilet purposes".[2]

During the later Tang Dynasty (618–907 AD), an Arab traveler to China in the year 851 AD remarked:
"They [the Chinese] are not careful about cleanliness, and they do not wash themselves with water when they have done their necessities; but they only wipe themselves with paper."[2]

During the early 14th century, it was recorded that in modern-day Zhejiang province alone there was an annual manufacturing of toilet paper amounting in ten million packages of 1,000 to 10,000 sheets of toilet paper each.[2] During the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644 AD), it was recorded in 1393 that an annual supply of 720,000 sheets of toilet paper (two by three feet in size) were produced for the general use of the imperial court at the capital of Nanjing.[2] From the records of the Imperial Bureau of Supplies of that same year, it was also recorded that for Emperor Hongwu's imperial family alone, there were 15,000 sheets of special soft-fabric toilet paper made, and each sheet of toilet paper was even perfumed.[2]

Like this comment
Posted by Concerned Californian
a resident of Valley Trails
on Feb 17, 2012 at 12:52 pm

(Comment deemed inappropriate by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff)

Like this comment
Posted by ahuh
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 17, 2012 at 2:01 pm

"concerned citizen" just resorts to calling people names when the truth does not match up with whatever opinion he holds. I don't agree so they must be bought off. . .Easier to complain and blame others. Blah blah blah

Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Feb 17, 2012 at 9:00 pm

what's all the fuss...can we all get along?

Like this comment
Posted by Browser
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Feb 18, 2012 at 12:56 am

I like it that the council, having had "their hands somewhat tied by an Urban Habitat coalition," is "moving cautiously toward a Growth Management policy that will still limit new permits and property densities."

What's not to like there? And just who is Urban Habitat?

(The Publisher and Editor of the Pleasanton Weekly ... a couple of left wing nuts??? Oh, puhleeze! They are anything but!)

Like this comment
Posted by clink
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 18, 2012 at 1:58 pm

A friend came to visit me from Tracy. He thought Pleasanton was a metropolitan city. "Look" he said, "you have six lanes on Santa Rita. You have major corporate offices all over the place. The roads are crowded and it sprawls like a big city."

I thought about it for a second, and remember when Pleasanton was considered the "back woods". Maybe my friend was right and we are no longer the hick-town of old (I liked living a hick-town by the way). All kinds of change occurs when a city gets big. I use to have sheep by my house. Now it's all huge McMansions with stars like Dilbert living two blocks away.

I'm going to visit my friend in Tracy someday. But, first I'm going to go to Fiesta Taco, close my eyes and remember the good old days when this was an outback hick-town. Gesh, I miss those days.

Like this comment
Posted by clink
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 18, 2012 at 2:01 pm


You know Fred A. whatever you think of the PW, we are able to get local happenings for FREE online and delivered to my mailbox. I just don't understand why people like you feel the need to blast something that costs the PW staff and owners a bundle to keep going for your convenience.

Try going to MacDonald's or Safeway and tell them you want their food for free so you can slam it over it's packaging or quality or some arcane issue. They will laugh you out of town.

In fact now that I think about it I feel a good laugh coming on right now.

Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Stay up to date on local coronavirus coverage with our daily news digest email.

The takeout math just doesn't work for restaurants
By Tim Hunt | 28 comments | 3,520 views

The Impact of COVID-19 on Our High School Juniors and Seniors
By Elizabeth LaScala | 0 comments | 2,587 views

The first few seconds after awakening; before I remember the virus
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 1,979 views