Here is a small sample of replies to Re-Imagine Menlo Park posts on this blog, on the Nextdoor network, in The Almanac Town Square, and via email.
“Thanks you so much for sharing this valuable information. Having been part of the the “visioning” process for El Camino Real and seeing how citizen input was misused and even ignored by the consultants, I can understand how you came away less than happy. Your suggestions make sense to me. Stay on it.”
“Dana, this was so awesome, I would recommend that the council no longer hire outside traffic consultants.”
“Very good overview and proposals.”
“Thank you for opening up a dialog of discussion…For starters I recommend closing off Santa Cruz Ave on all Sunday’s to cars thereby making it bike friendly… Move the Farmers Market to a section of the closed off avenue – no car Sundays !”
“If this could be done in a thoughtful way, making some portion of Santa Cruz pedestrian-only would be a great idea. Most shops along Santa Cruz already have back entrances facilitating quick entry/exit for people who are not looking for the pedestrian experience. Our family would certainly choose to come to Menlo Park downtown more frequently for dining, etc I know that when Santa Cruz is closed for special events in the summer, it is something the community really enjoys.”
“It could be that some limited part of downtown could be set off for ped only, but not to the detriment of smooth cross town traffic flow. It is tough enough already. Several malls (Town & Country, Sharon Heights in this area) have been revived recently by getting in the right types of stores. MP Chamber of Commerce should hire the mall consultants to get similar advice.”
“I think it would be unwise to assume that a pedestrian street is the reason why we don’t have more exciting shops before creating a traffic nightmare on Santa Cruz I’d like to see the development on El Camino go into affect and see what that does to draw more vibrancy to Santa Cruz.”
“Closing Santa Cruz would kill downtown MP. It is not a regional hub and there is a world class mall a mile away. We should focus on getting the downtown plan implemented. Attract more foot traffic and business that stay open past 5pm. We should try to do the basics like fixing the dilapidated sidewalks and proving decent street lighting. I do think closing part of SC for the farmers market is a good idea. This is already in the downtown plan.
“It would be a tragic mistake if Menlo Park chooses a short term solution (one parking lot) to solve a small part of a long term problem( a more vibrant downtown).
Take all the public property including all the parking lots, all of Santa Cruz Ave and all the cross streets between ECR and University and Menlo and Oak Grove and put it into a design competition to create a totally walkable, bicyclable, playable, shopable surface area with ALL the parking underground. This total publicly owned land is incredible valuable and developing it in three dimensions could provide an exciting opportunity that would attract capital and encourage the current downtown property owners to either find ways to connect their current buildings to this project or allow their properties to be acquired by the City via eminent domain (which has great tax advantages to the current owners) and then placed into the pool for the new integrated design.
All it would take is vision, leadership and courage.”
About Re-Imagine Menlo Park
“I doubt that you wrote this piece. It reads like a brochure or publicity piece. 2) I don’t think this is a good forum for proselytizing. 3) Yes, I voted for M.”
“I did not whine, complain or express bitterness in my e-mail. You have the right to dismiss my comments but I can’t fail to notice that you do not answer them and show hubris in your response. You plainly show that you have no interest in collaborative and productive meetings to advance the positive goal of planning Menlo Park’s future. I suspect you just want to advance the appearance of endorsing that goal. Your falseness is showing.”
– Maggie Betstock (Central Menlo Park)
“May I suggest that you all take these dialogs to Dana’s Blog. I don’t think the rest of us are interested …”
– James Newton (Stanford Hills)
“The Nextdoor neighborhood is not the appropriate place for posting information from Re-Imagine Menlo Park. I do not want to read it.”
“No one is forcing anyone to read anything on Nextdoor. Not interested? Don’t read the posts nor the comments. It’s really that simple. I am always amazed by how others try to stifle discussions in public forums.”
– Dana Hendrickson