The Planning Process

I see the planning process as a process of education and guidance. A process in which the town helps people achieve their dreams while educating property owners about the town’s land use values that have helped to make this the beautiful town that it is.

Good design is what distinguishes the high quality of Los Gatos’ built environment from other communities. How do you legislate good design? …..with abstract design standards.

Our Town has worked very hard at this complex task and produced several documents, including the Hillside Development Standards to guide the property owner toward this goal. The hallmark of good design is site appropriateness, just as fit is all important in quality clothes. All sites are different just as all people are different. Rigid compliance to the exact wording of the standards by Planning Commissioners that don’t understand design results in narrow-minded interpretation of the abstract design standards and ironically ultimately defeats the goal of quality design.

Many of the recent Planning Commission decisions have been overturned by the Town Council, which in effect has created a new order of business. The Planning Commission process appears to be broken.

I'm interested in ways that you think the town can improve the planning process. I'd appreciate hearing your thoughts.

Traffic / Safety

As more people are walking for their health and to reduce pollution, pedestrian safety around high-use areas, schools, parks, busy intersections should be given more consideration.

Congestion caused by High School traffic is not just a traffic issue but a potential public safety issue because of the effective lock down that happens. I would encourage closer working relationship between the Town and the High School District to better deal with the traffic and other student-related issues.

Another traffic safety issue exists at Baggerly Field parking lot on Blossom Hill Road where Sara Cole was hit last year. A protected parking area could be created by having the cars park facing the street instead of the playing field and Blossom Hill Park, something like the Shannon Rd. side of the park.

I'm interested in ways that you think the town can improve traffic and safety. I'd appreciate hearing your thoughts.

Teens Activities

Let’s make teens an active part of the fabric of this town. Teens need places to shop, and places to hang-out where they can see and be seen and places to get involved in productive activities. After all, we have them to thank for their high test scores, that keep everyone’s property values so high.

A lot of focus is placed on the drug and alcohol use of teens. According to the Cornerstone study that the high school district conducted last year, mental health issues, such as stress-related illnesses and depression, are far more debilitating and pervasive issues with the youth in our town. I’d like to see more focus on this issue.

I'm interested in ways that you think the town can be more conducive to adding value to the teen experience in town. I'd appreciate hearing your thoughts.

Senior Citizens and Young Adults

More affordable housing for senior citizens and young adults would make it easier families to continue to live in our community as they grow and change.

Also, maybe in the shuffle of spaces when the library moves to its new building, the senior citizens could get a lockable space for their activities, like the teens have.

I'm interested in ways that you think the town can be of service to senior citizens and young adults. I'd appreciate hearing your thoughts.

Business

Development along Los Gatos Boulevard needs as much, if not more, attention than downtown. Development of the vacated auto dealerships should be given priority due to the blight that they present and the loss of significant tax revenue that occurred when the dealerships closed. Development on the Boulevard needs to be carefully considered so that it respects our small town character and preserves the views of our beautiful hillsides and is of appropriate scale and usefulness to the community at large.

I believe our historic downtown can be both a functional retail location for the town’s everyday needs and a charming regional draw. A synergy between the two will make our town more economically and aesthetically vibrant. However, for this to happen we need to consider providing more parking downtown.

The small industrial area on University Avenue which has mostly auto body shops many housed in quonset huts, adds richness to the tapestry of our town. It should be respected for what it is and encouraged to remain. I was appalled that Akeena Solar was not allowed to use visible working solar panels above it's shop in the industrial area on University Ave.

I'm interested in what you think about business in town. I'd appreciate hearing your thoughts.