Comments

Comments on EIR:

Friedman, Barry

Grant, Pat

Hendricks, Glenn

Skewes-Cox, Amy

Henson, Alexander

Whittum, David

Comments about MAEP

Boehm, Jan

Staats, Debbie

Yeager, Don

Yeager, Jeanne

 

 

 

 

MaryAve.com is your most complete source of information on the City of Sunnyvale, CA,  proposed Mary Avenue Extension (MAE) (Bridge, Overpass, whatever), its Environmental Impact Report (EIR) and the litigation seeking to decertify the EIR.

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MAE -- The Project and EIR's in General Comments about the EIR Comments about the MAEP City Council Meeting 10/28/08 and start of Litigation The Litigation Continued (Under Construction)

COMMENTS ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT REPORT (EIR)

Letter from Susan Jones and Barry Friedman

Sunnyvale City Council Members:

Your vote on the Mary Avenue Extension should not be based on a faulty DEIR or the wishes of staff over the wishes of your constituents. The impact is too great for those of us who live on or near the Mary Avenue corridor. It is our contention that the DEIR is an ineffective tool for you to use in your assessment of this project for the following reasons:

It is impossible for most individuals to interpret the DEIR as published.

n       It references documents which have been difficult to obtain or decipher

n       Documents that are referenced are not found on-line and several that are on­line are unsearchable for pertinent key words making cross referencing practically Impossible

It appears that much of this DEIR is based upon old and out-dated information from earlier studies

The traffic estimates are actually guestimates and they assume the majority of traffic will dissipate before it hits El Camino. Again, this is a guess. We know this because previous 'guesses' had 10,000-15,000 additional cars coming through our neighborhood. Those numbers have mysteriously disappeared from all references — except the Sunnyvale Sun:

n     "Some neighbors who live near Mary Avenue expressed displeasure with the project because it would add traffic to the street. A late 1990s traffic study indicated there would be 10,000 more daily car trips on Mary with the bridge, and that figure now may be higher." March 21, 2007

n     "He (Adam Levermore-Rich, Sunnyvale Spokesman) also said the draft EIR will include an updated traffic study. A late 1990s traffic study indicated there would be 10,000 more trips as a result of the bridge, but that number may be higher now." Aug. 15, 2007

-  The DEIR pre-supposes the majority of traffic will be arriving at Mary Ave from Central Expressway and does not consider the large amount of traffic trying to reach the Moffett Park (MP) area via Highway 85 north. Since traffic starts to back up on Hwy 85 by Homestead, we believe that, if the bridge is allowed to be built, drivers will exit 85 as soon as possible resulting in thousands of vehicles invading our residential streets.

-  The DEIR claims a traffic increase of 30% in the Sunnyvale West area (SVW) south of El Camino over the next 13 years. With no major construction in the area (large office spaces, or housing complexes), how can this be? There is nowhere for such large construction to take place — unless the City Is planning to ravage our parkland.

- It does not explore other mentioned alternatives in detail

- It fails to seriously consider the possibility of direct ingress/egress to the Moffett Park area from both highways 101 and 237 thereby keeping the traffic on the highways where it belongs. The need to interact with other jurisdictions should not be an excuse to overlook an obvious solution.  

As things are now, cars are forced onto surface streets because of the lack of viable alternatives. Lest we be accused of NIMBYism, understand, we are not just trying to protect our neighborhood -- we're trying to protect all of Sunnyvale. If we can make staying ON the highways more attractive to drivers, perhaps we can reduce the number of cars on surface roads as well. Without a reasonable, logical alternative, cars are forced onto city streets. That's bad - for everyone - residents, drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians!

We are trying to improve the quality of life for the drivers, too. They don't want to be stuck in traffic at lights every few hundred yards. Given a decent highway thoroughfare, it would be safe to say most drivers would opt to stay on a highway rather than take surface roads with Its additional hazards (pedestrians, stop and go movement, cyclists.,.)

With the cost of gasoline skyrocketing, it also makes sense to keep the cars on the highways as it is common knowledge that highway driving yields better mileage per gallon in most conventional vehicles. With 3 out of 4 cars appearing to be an SUV that is sure to mount up in both gas consumption and pollution!

There is a possibility that this bridge could impinge future upgrading of the 101 and 237 interchanges if done as a separate project

For cyclists, if we can get more cars off the streets, this should improve their quality of life, too.

Furthermore, according to the Sunnyvale Traffic Department, because Mary Avenue is classified as 'Arterial,' no traffic mitigation options will be available to us. jIn addition, when deciding whether or not to implement traffic calming measures the Traffic Department takes several issues into consideration. We submit that using the same list of concerns applied to the building of the Mary Avenue Extension shoOs a discernable negative impact to the SVW Neighborhood:

Permanence - What could be more permanent than a $100 million bridge? Neighborhood Property Values - Will decrease as traffic increases and removal of on-street parking is implemented (throughout Sunnyvale, not just on Mary Ave) Accident and Crash Reduction - More traffic equals more accidents

Delays in Errrergency Response Vehicles - More traffic makes it harder for ERV to get through to their destination. Ever watched an ERV try to get through when there is nowhere for the traffic to move out of the way?

Diverting the "Problem" traffic to another neighborhood street - This Is exactly what this bridge will do to us. Diverting problem traffic through our neighborhood streets Everyone is inconvenienced - Everyone who lives in, or drives through, the Sunnyvale West Neighborhood will be Inconvenienced

Benefits are very localized - Mainly traffic from outside Sunnyvale will be using a bridge located at the far end of the City. These benefits seem very localized! Actions can be significant for certain types of vehicles - Will we now have "18 Wheelers" driving through our streets? It seems very likely.

Impacts on parking and other road users - Difficulty in exiting one's driveway on Mary

    Visual impacts. noise impacts and aesthetic concerns - This Is obvious. More cars and

Trucks = more pollution, more noise; and the bridge itself will be visually and  aesthetically undesirable

At one of the City sponsored informational forums, prior to the start of the meeting, Jack Whitthaus was overheard saying to Moffett Park Business representatives (paraphrased) 'This has been on the books for decades. It's time to get on with it.' This is not an item on a 'To Do' list that needs to be struck off. This project will affect our quality of fife and the value of our homes.

During this same meeting, Mr. Whithaus declared his goal was to create an additional north/south corridor along the western border of Sunnyvale. It is our contention that Highway 85 should be that corridor. Obviously, improvements will need to be addressed to handle the 85/237 exchange but this project is already on the books with the VTA.

In conclusion, this project is a "one-way Street' in that it is only the developers who benefit. The bridge serves no logical purpose for either those trying to reach the Moffett Business Park or those who live in the SVW area.

Text Box:  Text Box:  We, and more than 1,200 of your constituents, are OPPOSED to the Mary Avenue Extension.

Regards,

Susan Jones & Barry Friedman