Editorial: Now is the time to share your thoughts on downtown planning


The city of Pleasanton's Downtown Specific Plan Task Force is assembled and a project timeline has been created.

This is the time for the large and diverse stakeholder group -- the residents who feel a strong connection and ownership of our downtown -- to make their desires known.

Not in six months or a year. Not when recommendations are going to the City Council.

The update to the plan, which was adopted in 2002, will include evaluating parking requirements for development projects, exploring the integration of residential development, evaluating and clarifying maximum building height in downtown, integrating trails and pedestrian pathways, Division Street enhancements, and evaluating and providing land-use recommendations for the existing civic center site in coordination with the Civic Center Master Plan.

The city has created a website,, with up-to-date information about the project and the timeline, background material and other documents, contact information and, the most important aspect, ways to participate.

For example, residents are encouraged to attend public workshops, monthly meetings and complete online surveys. City staff contact information is available on the site so residents can write letters, call or email with their opinions.

This month, residents are invited to take a self-guided tour of other Bay Area downtowns and take notes about -- and photos of -- what they like and think would be successful in our downtown. There will also be an online survey out soon, and residents who sign up for updates on the site will be able to participate.

The next task force meeting will be held on March 28 at 6:30 p.m. in the council chambers at 200 Old Bernal Ave. The time is somewhat convenient being after work and school, with commute time factored in, but before the kids' bedtime.

This will be an 18- to 24-month-long process, and the city is actively reaching out to residents to participate. So many times people say they were never asked for their input. This is not one of those times.

Let your voice be heard now.

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7 people like this
Posted by thx for the outreach
a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Feb 17, 2017 at 4:20 pm

REALLY appreciate the proactive communications to the community to increase our awareness and involvement. This is an important project and deserves strong input from residents.

Is there a link yet for the downtown survey or how can we get it when it comes out. Appreciate another short editorial with the link.
Thanks again.

Like this comment
Posted by Kelli
a resident of Nolan Farms
on Feb 19, 2017 at 7:46 am

I am excited about this. Thanks for reaching out to get input. What a great idea to collect photos of other downtowns. Where should people send the photos?

Like this comment
Posted by Jack
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 19, 2017 at 11:44 am

That is a very interesting opening paragraph...
"This is the time for the large and diverse stakeholder group -- the residents who feel a strong connection and ownership of our downtown..."
Where is that "large and diverse stakeholder group" when my property tax bill needs to be paid? Where are all those "residents who feel a strong connection and ownership of our downtown" when my house needs to be painted?
Jan Batcheller is the only actual property owner or "stakeholder" (that I know of) on the task force...

Like this comment
Posted by Phyllis
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Feb 19, 2017 at 3:18 pm

So very happy the city planners are looking into the numerous concerns associated with downtown development well before development begins. Equally as happy that all residents are invited to participate and provide input well in advance. Thank you!!

5 people like this
Posted by Mark
a resident of Val Vista
on Feb 19, 2017 at 6:49 pm

With the way this city council plans it will not matter if anyone shows up. They only care about what the developer wants. Just check out the disaster that is now Owens Drive next to the BART station.I am so thankful that this city council wasn't in charge of the Bernal property. The developer back then wanted to put thousands of homes on the property. This group would have gladly allowed it. I will attend these meeting but take pictures because soon our downtown will look like Walnut Creeks downtown

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