BUENA VISTA NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION Minutes of the Meeting Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Meeting called to order at 7:00 PM by President Brian
PRESENT: [25 people present] Brian Ward (President) Carlos Ramirez (Vice President) Loui Tucker (Secretary) Mikala Caune (Treasurer) Mike Damron Sally Henning Ken Henning Scott Hraban Jesse Hraban Marty Lamb Mike LaRocca Brian Leipsig Marcos Montes Steve Rogers Robin Rogers CT & GT Ruth White Jerry White Sabine Zappe
John Myers (representing County Supervisor Ken Yeager’s office)
Lan Tran (representing City Councilmember Pierreluigi Oliverio's office)
Regarding the Merdian/San Carlos Development/Project Jin Zhu, Project Architect Mike Enderby, Senior Planner, City of San Jose Erik Hayden, Republic Urban Properties, Inc.
Presentation by Represenatatives for the Merdian -West San Carlos Project
Jin Zhu, Mike Enderby, and Erik Hayden presented information about the proposed project for the southwest corner of West San Carlos and Meridian. Highlights of their presentation included:
197 units (some flats, some townhouses) on 3.4 acres
garage and parking concealed within the complex with 438 parking spaces
Garage will have 390 stalls for residents and 29 spaces for guests
Townhomes will have 48 stalls and 13 spaces for guests
set backs on Page Street have been increased, with wider sidewalks
Plaza area on the corner to soften the massing impact and provide public space
Units as planned will be for sale, not rent, but that might change if economy changes.
More public meetings and hearing are being scheduled, both in the community as well as before the City Planning Commission and the City Council. At future hearings, more details will be provided with respect to signage and set backs.
Concerns by BVNA members were voiced, including: contribution to parks and/or green space, mitigating impact on traffic, selling rights to develop to another developer who might ignore current design specifications, height and architecture of the buildings and over-all size of the project
BVNA suggested changed included:
reduction in the total number of units by 20%
reduction of the height on Page Street to two stories
reduction of the height where the project abuts the neighborhood to two stories
older-style architecture reflecting the neighborhood
increased parking ratios
installation of a traffic light
Mike LaRocca with the Sherman Oaks Community Association said more meetings with the neighbors and neighborhoods should be held. Robert Solis commented that perhaps they should have held out for a larger public meeting instead of coming to a BVNA meeting, no matter how well attended.
It is doubtful this project would be completed earlier than 2012. MINUTES - Minutes of the April 29, 2008 meeting were approved.
Minutes of BVNA General Meeting 4/29/08
TREASURER’S REPORT. Current balance is $944. Recent deposits include membership fees ($380), income from the recent yard sale ($248); and home tour income, including paid ads and advance tickets sales ($250)
WELCOMING NEW MEMBERS The meeting welcomed Mike Damron and his son Kellen. Mike’s wife Michelle could not attend the meeting but was welcomed. They recently moved into Patricia Johnson’s former home on Menker.
STATUS OF THE NEIGHBORHOOD John Myers from Supervisor Yeager’s office and Lan Tran from City Councilmember Oliverio's office being present, BVNA members offered their input and observations regarding activities and circumstances in the Neighborhood.
The trailer parked on Scott Avenue was removed.
The bent sign at Moorpark and Leigh is still bent and still need repair or replacement.
The “No trucks over 3 tons” sign is still missing in the Chiechi-Page area and, as a result, large
trucks are parking there.
467 Meridian is now supposedly “in compliance,” although neighbors seem to think people are
still living in the garages.
Residents have a problem crossing San Carlos at the end of Menker. Drivers are NOT stopping,
despite the signage. It was requested that a “STATE LAW STATES YOU MUST STOP” sign
should be added (like the one on Lincoln in Willow Glen).
Furniture still being dumped in the area: On Chiechi 4 couches and 2 love seats are currently
stilling across from the apartments; there is a couch in front of the San Jose Water Co. property on Willard; there is also a couch on Scott between Chiechi and Willard. Can we get a “$1000 fine for dumping” sign???
ITEMS OF SPECIAL CONCERN Boom cars (cars with excessively and deliberately loud stereos) are a big problem on Menker,
specifically across from the Menclair Apartment complex near Menker and Moorpark. Boom cars have long been associated with drug traffic and other illegal activity. There is a red Mercedes with no front license plate and a black Impala that have been in the neighborhood for over a year and consistently “boom” through the neighborhood.
Neighbors are requesting “QUIET ZONE” signs as well as an addendum to rental contracts for the Menclair Apartments. They are preparing a flyer they would like to distribute.
A suggestion was made that the neighbors file a small claims action against the owners of the apartments for creating a public nuisance and disturbing the peace. This has worked in other areas in the past where a similar situation has occurred.
There was an offer made to loan the neighbors who lived across the street from the apartment complex a video camera to video tape the boom cars.
MISC. OLD BUSINESS a. Sally Henning reported that there had been some “gang kids” on the equipment at the Buena
Vista Park. She called the police. The kids then told the police that they were being harassed, that they had only been playing on the equipment. The police told Sally that, in the future, she should not confront teenagers playing on the equipment. Sally also talked about how to get an anti-graffiti kit. Sally reminded people to visit and use the park because a consistent presence there reduces the bad behavior.
Minutes of BVNA General Meeting 4/29/08
Robin Rogers will be the BVNA’s delegate to the Neighborhood Commission, with Ken Henning as the alternate. The Neighborhood Caucus is June 7 at 9:30. There are six candidates for three positions.
Another development project is on the horizon: 124 studio apartments are planned for Sunol at Park Avenue (between Pizza Jack’s and Downtown Feed & Pet). .5 parking spaces per unit are planned. If the “Less-Than-Two-Acres Rule” is applied, this project may just breeze through.
There was a report on the Home Tour, which has six houses plus a garden. The brochures are being prepared and everyone is getting ready for the June 7 tour.
A bid has been placed on the property at Mayellen and Scott so that it can be purchased and used to expand the existing park. The Parks Commission and the City Council have to approve the purchase and there will be public meetings to discuss what should be included in the park (dog run? basketball court?) Money will come from “in lieu” fees paid by developers.
NEW BUSINESS It was suggested that the BVNA establish a “Home Improvement Project.” The idea is to nominate
and eventually select owner-occupied homes that, due to financial constraints, disability and/or advanced age of the occupants, are distressed and/or poorly kept, and offer to provide the volunteer labor to clean up, paint and/or landscape the properties. The goal is to improve the properties one at a time, and simultaneously upgrade and improve the entire neighborhood, build our sense of community, and strength the ties among the residents. An email will be sent out detailing the proposed structure and suggesting that BVNA members identify and perhaps photographs, speak with the owners, and propose the properties at the next meeting.
ANNOUNCEMENT June 14 is the ground-breaking for the new community center - library on Bascom!
NEXT MEETING The next meeting will be Tuesday, June 24, 2008 but the location was not determined at the meeting.
The meeting adjourned at 9:10 PM.