« Commenters' Names | Main | "There Are Like 150 Restaurants" »

April 10, 2015



Traffic will also be no small part of the equation. How will anyone or anything (office workers, construction workers, construction equipment) heading SB from SF or 380 access the site? Did Caltrans factor in development of this area when it designed the new Broadway overpass? If you live or own a business near Peninsula Ave and 101, where San Mateo is studying the feasibility of an SB offramp or more, this can't be a good thing.

Bruce Dickinson

Guys, being a thinker's man, if you will, Bruce Dickinson stays sharp as a tack by doing mental exercises. One of my favorites is to take a leading question, but then apply it to your own situation from your perspective.

SV: What's the next Burlingame?

BD: There is no other city like Burlingame, as all the cities that had the capability of changing, by not putting restrictions on height limits, caps on square footage, and having "downtown plans" are now fully developed and extremely dense. If they can undo all that, reduce density, both residential and commercial, plant trees, and give back park-like spaces back to the public, they have an opportunity to create a Burlingame-type of environment.

Folks, how ridiculous does the question and answer sound, but twisted on its head? The reason why it is ridiculous is that one cannot recreate a scarce area like Burlingame, in the sense of a tree-lined boulevard, two quaint downtowns, and a park-like setting in nearly every neighborhood. Once you do the Redwood City "thing" there is no way of undoing it, that is the path of no return. Why would we as residents willingly give up our precious, scare resources?

I once had one of my many cerebral tete-a-tetes, if you will, with an investor in the oil and gas industry, who made a confession of sorts to me. He said, "why would the USA want to use up its own oil and natural gas resources first and achieve independence? We should import as much as we can now while it's cheap and save our own oil and natural gas for a later day, when it will become more valuable and everyone else has run out. The USA is not thinking like an investor when thinking about its energy policy."

Something to ponder when you think about your own "investment" in Burlingame!


That is a nice retelling of the Golden Goose! Thank you, sir.


The tree lined streets, quaint neighborhoods and two downtown areas have nothing to do with development at the waterfront or an overpass at Peninsula.

the market will tell

That's the essential problem with California...a few individuals that assume that they have a monopoly on wisdom...are essentially in charge of the whole state.

We'd drill our own oil, so that we don't enrich middle eastern terrorists who want to slaughter Americans, for one. And, it would create a lot of jobs in American, instead of creating and sustaining jobs around the world. And the taxes from these two factors alone would strongly support the American gov't.

Yes, Fred, indeed, we've all spoken out against the Dem-backed, Agenda 21 inspired Regionalism like ABAG, HSR, and GBI.

I grew up in a town called Wilmette, IL, where many of the streets are even paved in brick. People are kind and helpful to each other and people understand how to run organizations for the long run vs. to pander to voting blocks.

However, most of the big Class A office projects are being built either in SF, in the Valley or at least on the Caltrain, and none of those categories match Burlingame's land-fill.

Only time and the market will tell what will become of the former drive-in.

Bruce Dickinson

A consensus of two actually is definitionally correct as opposed to a consensus of one. As Bruce Dickinson says, misery loves company and that company ain't driving Ferraris.

If I had to guess, Joe on the other hand, who does seem to get my point, exudes confidence and success (in spite of and not because of the lovely Mrs. Baylock). That is one guy who gets it and consequently I would not be surprised he is the top dog at whatever he does for a living. I can spot it, as well as the opposite, a mile away. You can take that right to the Bank (or in the opposite case, charge your newly approved Discover Card).


Caltrans would have paid for a full overpass at Peninsula during their lane widening construction of 101. Mrs. Baylock was key in preventing that from happening. If Burlingame or San Mateo have to pay any amount of money for the Peninsula overpass becoming a full interchange we can thank Mrs. Baylock for that.

Bruce Dickinson

Oh, if things were so simple. If there is a free lunch, why not eat it? My friends, before you whet your appetite, let Bruce Dickinson give you sound advice that will make you successful: There is no such thing as a free lunch.

While someone can elucidate the gory details of the Peninsula overpass, I know this for a fact: transportation dollars are controlled by a hostage-taker "hydra" if you will. Yes, the four headed monster of ABAG, MTC, Cal-Trans, and HSA provides "free" overpasses. There's one hitch. There IS a price and there ALWAYS IS, period. That price is eminent domain, housing quotas, destruction of our communities, improper urbanization of suburban environments, environmental calamities, wasted money and a whole host of externalities that yield little economic or environmental benefits. And yes, the diktats from these hostage agencies dangle the lure of dollars for various "improvement" projects that cash-strapped cities, reeling from their own bad management and financial decisions, cannot refuse. It is a Herculean effort to slay the hydra, no pun intended.

Luckily, Burlingame by virtue of businesses such as automotive dealerships and hotels, the high cost of residential property (which begets dynamite schools), need not be taken hostage and should do the right thing when it comes to hostage negotiations, which is, you don't. This is why ECR is lined by trees when no other city has this. This is why a property right across the street from Peninsular Ave or Murchison Ave will be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars less for the exact same house within 100 feet. When you put things in these terms, in the way it affects you way of life and your assets, you start making decisions from a position of strength. That is what qualifies you for an Amercian Express Black Card instead of a Discover Card. For those that don't know the difference between those two cards, one can let you a Ferrari within 1 minute, the other can buy one Ferrari's parking brake handle. Folks, credit is earned, not taken. That is advice that you can take right to the bank.

I hope that Burlingame always takes the high road (no pun intended) and NEVER cave into the "ransom" which is always the easy way out. Sadly, I see little in the way of backbone these days from our government and Bruce Dickinson hopes for some positive change in the next election cycles.


Bruce, you have said it better than I can so allow me to simply remind Fred of the details. I say that tongue partially in cheek since I believe Fred is smart enough to know the details, he just chooses to ignore them.

Bruce writes: "That price is eminent domain, housing quotas, destruction of our communities, improper urbanization of suburban environments"

In the case of the Peninsula overpass vs a Peninsula interchange the cost to the neighborhood was studied by city staff and accepted as The Truth by Caltrans. The cost was eminent domain of the front yards of the houses on the B'game side of Peninsular Ave to it could be widened PLUS an obnoxious amount of new traffic turning onto Dwight, Stanley, Clarendon, etc.

Sorry Fred, that is unacceptable. Get over it. You are wrong on this and no amount of Voice whining will ever change my mind.

If B'game or San Mateo have to pay anything for an interchange they don't want or need, then the cost of the lawsuits based on the traffic studies will outweigh the cost of the interchange. Will you ante up for those costs? I doubt it.

Bruce Dickinson

Well folks, there you have it. Bruce Dickinson does not even have to know anything about the details of situation other than the players, and I laser in on the issues. What I do know is this: I know a hydra and a hostage taker when I see it and that only comes from experience. Folks, every organization, yes EVERY organization is exactly the same, whether it be a company, an agency, a government, a "non-for profit"...its the same humans, same motives, and critically, the same "currency", if you will. Take it from me, I've seen it all from every angle, in the numerous organizations I've been involved with in my lifetime.


I don't know about the front lawns, from a city official I was told it was only two street parking spaces. That ship has sailed though, now that it's built I believe there would need to be commercial property taken and perhaps the apartment building. No front lawns, however.

The traffic concern, I will say again, Palo Alto keeps traffic where they want it and away from where they don't very effectively.

It's just a shame that shortsightedness caused that project to be done wrong. I still believe it will happen at some point, but the costs will be higher.


There was no "ship" that sailed, Fred. There was NEVER EVER an iteration of the interchange that ONLY took two parking spots. I don't know how many times you have written and spread that false information. Even if "an official" gave you that information, you are bright enough, I suspect, to know it couldn't have been true. The interchange never died. It has hid its ugly head for a few years while under study. The current, and as far as I am aware, preferred option that is being looked at requires the taking of nearly three blocks of commercial property along 101 between Burlingame Avenue east and Peninsula Ave. On the other side of the ramp, the takings are a large low income rental complex. I put the link up here many times for the public to see. It is available on a link buried in the City of San Mateo website. The entire project takes place in SM territory, though with definite impacts through adjacent residential neighborhoods.

If you think that the impacts and costs are outweighed by the benefits, that is certainly your right. But please stop spreading false information about the actual proposal.


Joe - "the front yards of the houses on the B'game side" - well respected Burlingame official in front of many people - "two parking spots".

I'm not lying and I highly doubt that person was either. I even asked said person again and person confirmed it. I'm not here to spread falsehoods, I express an opinion based on what I gather in the community. Your entitled to your opinions, as well. And Ferrari fantasies, if you so choose. :)


"You're" dang it.

Cathy Baylock

In 2006, at the request of the City Council, in order to make an informed opinion about whether the Peninsula overpass rebuild should include a "full interchange" or keep the status quo, a joint traffic study was done by the cities of Burlingame and San Mateo. The staff report presented indicated with the closure of Rollins/ Amphlett Road, all southbound traffic would flow through streets from North Humboldt through Dwight Avenues which would become the new southbound freeway approaches. Secondly, this southbound access would bring a doubling of traffic from both Burlingame and San Mateo to use this southbound ingress where none existed before necessitating a fourth lane be added to Peninsula Avenue which would need to come from the north side of the street. The options? Either eliminate all on street parking in front of the homes on the north side of Peninsula starting from the overpass and ending at the train tracks or keep the street parking and take the 12-15 from the front yards of the houses on the street. The public hearing (Sept 2006, I believe) will support that the council voted to NOT support the "engineering" of the new overpass to include a possible "future" southbound ingress and egress. The project itself was never to build the full interchange at that time as there were no funds allocated for the 70 or so properties to be taken by eminent domain , but whether to build the overpass with the ability to add southbound ingress/egress sometime in the future. Despite what we were told, that the overpass would NOT be engineered to accept the future ramps, it turns out that it was. Who actually made the decision to do that will remain a mystery, but that ability has been built into the existing structure which continues to place those properties in jeopardy. That is bad government at its finest as it continues to place a "cloud" over those landowners as the issue has NOTot been settled as they had once led us to believe. End of story: the ramps were engineered to accept future southbound ingress/egress and the City of San Mateo is doing a million dollar study to do just this…against the strong wishes of both the city council and citizens of Burlingame.

Bruce Dickinson

Mrs. Baylock, thank you for the edification. It sounds like a case of Fred vs the World, not that there is anything wrong with WrongSaidFred expressing his opinions, because as Mrs. Baylock mentioned, the City Council at the time took their job of REPRESENTATIVE democracy seriously, it appears. This is far before Bruce Dickinson graced Burlingame with his presence, mind you, so I don't know the full history. If public opinion in Burlingame was against that proposal, it is the City Council's OBLIGATION to represent citizens. Bruce Dickinson would rather take a representative democracy that will make some bad decisions every once in a while, so long as most feel like they have a voice. That will make a better community and I'm sure many of you on this site will attest that Burlingame's history of public activism and the community having a real voice, are responsible for making the city what it is today. This includes every Burlingame homeowner who is a real-estate millionaire because of that democracy and community activism. So it made a better town, and made you asset-rich, as it were. You just had to be at the right place at the right time, vote, express your opinions, be politically active, and voila, you're sitting on one million dollar dirt, house or no house! This is a tradition that Burlingame residents should keep alive and hopefully the City Council recognizes their important job as representatives.

10 cowbell rings for Cathy Baylock and just as importantly, 10 Cowbell rings for her sitting on a Council that made a decision that was reflective of public opinion! I'd love to ring the cowbell more for the current council...City Council, are you up to the challenge?





And you are too ignorant to even spell it correctly.


Well, that's good news!


PS: I guess person meant two parking spaces on the Burlingame side, the eminent domain occurs in San Mateo.

The rule of law makes us strong and wonderful.

I just attended the annual Cal vs. Stanford real estate development case competition at the Four Seasons in SF.

Cal won with a hotel focused development concept of Pier 1 at Fort Mason vs Stanford's food start up version of the Ferry Building there. I agree with Cal winning the Golden Shovel this year.

I also spoke with a top guy from CBRE regarding Burlingame Point.

The tenant demand for office there isn't happening because major tenants want the Caltrain. I agree. I'm riding it right now.

So, they're talking about building a phase of it spec via money that wants to get into the safe American shores of rule of law predictability vs. China's seize the day and personal property approach.

There's a distinct premium paid by investors for the rule of law and business friendliness.

What would work better there? A combination of water oriented apartments, and condo hotel rooms perhaps with a private yacht club component to add unique prestige appeal.

The city gets more TOT upside. The project gets done. Give city workers and other public service employees first dibs on the affordable units.

Deal done. Wasteland enhanced.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

About the Voice

  • The Burlingame Voice is dedicated to informing and empowering the Burlingame community. Our blog is a public forum for the discussion of issues that relate to Burlingame, California. On it you can read and comment on important city issues.

    Note: Opinions posted on the Burlingame Voice Blog are those of the poster and not necessarily the opinion of the editorial board of the Burlingame Voice. See Terms of Use

Contributing to the Voice

  • If you would like more information on the Burlingame Voice, send an email to [email protected] with your request or question. We appreciate your interest.

    Authors may login here.

    For help posting to the Voice, see our tutorial.