Guest Opinion – “Santa Clara’s Hall of Shame”
By Howard Myers
What in the world is the Santa Clara Hall of Shame?
It relates to what many consider the overbuilding of apartments in Santa Clara. It’s the opposite of smart growth.
We are a small group called ‘Santa Clara For Smart Growth’ (SC4SG). Our objective is to prevent the high density infill projects that do so much damage when planted in the midst of mature single family neighborhoods.
Santa Clara For Smart Growth started with a group of neighbors fighting a high density infill project planned for their quiet, residential neighborhood. This project would create significant traffic and parking problems with the overbearing presence of large buildings right next to single family homes. That and all the extra people dumped into the once sleepy neighborhood would have a very real, negative effect on our quality of life.
When we investigated the planned projects in Santa Clara it got worse. We found most of the new and proposed projects (75 percent) were the relatively smaller infill projects that do so much damage. The larger, centralized developments that don’t harm the older neighborhoods the same way, provide 83 percent of total planned units. The high density infill projects do the most damage for the least benefit. This information was presented to the council on April 18, 2017.
The Mayor/Council do seem to be listening and responding to the residents’ concerns about what many see as out of control growth in Santa Clara. But as they develop area-specific plans, we need to keep reminding them what does not work.
We have shown a few examples of infill projects that damage neighborhoods and should not have been allowed. I am sure there other projects in Santa Clara that fit this description and we are counting on you to submit them to the “Santa Clara Hall of Shame”.
Candidates for the Hall of Shame are developments in Santa Clara that don’t belong where they are and do damage to adjacent low density neighborhoods.
See https://www.santaclara4smartgrowth.com/sc-hall-of-shame for more details.
If you know of a development that qualifies please submit some pictures, description and comments. You will receive as much or as little public recognition as you want. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions.