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May 11, 2017



I never thought I would say this but I prefer the dirty, dilapidated tire shop over the developer's plan.


Oh boy the cash cow building of generic, boring and expensive housing is being done all up and down the Peninsula! The urbanization of our towns like never before!
Of course city council and planning would not show up. They really would prefer residents crawl under a rock and not show up to these meetings. But show they did and I applaud those who showed and spoke their mind!
Take a note and put on your must watch movie list for this weekend...Citizen Jane - The Building of a City and learn.
Think about it...the building of the huge office complex at the old drive-in site, the full interchange in the works for the Peninsula Overpass and there you have everything is aligning for a very special reason.

By the way think Burlingame is holding a meeting on 5/16 regarding Peninsula and San Mateo is holding a "community" workshop next day on 5/17. Be there or crawl back under your rock and accept the changes that are in store for us all!


How totally ironic that Cornell wants a landlord to break a valid lease so they can redevelop the property faster!!!!!!!!!!!!!


The Downtown Specific Plan was pointed to multiple times in the presentation as the basic premise for that which was presented.

There are too many complexities of that statement to go into here, including loss of local control on height and density, and parking revisions...but this excerpt is directly out of the city's guideline booklet for the Downtown Plan:

"In the residential areas, new projects should reinforce the fine-grained scale and quiet amenity that exists...."

And it was precisely for infill situations like this, that these guidelines were put into place--to temper massing as well as design.

This comes particularly into play where multiple, conjoined properties are directly adjacent single family and modest apartment dwelling neighborhoods that themselves, by virtue of the small patterning of narrow lots, exhibit a fine-tooth scale.

The style presented on Tuesday is the same as what is appearing all over the Bay Area --cheaply done modern. But personally, I don't think that should not be the focus of the conversation; it is lipstick on a pig at this early point and won't make a better project.

The problem with this infill and probably a slew of such projects on the horizon, is that they repel the fine scale around them and are not compatible-- neither in scale, nor massing; it's all to make to make the thing pencil out.

Furthermore, they are stripping every single mature tree and any vegetation off the lot, the very pieces of a development that can help it blend in and give a sense of place and variety. But even the minimal landscaping scheme was highlighted by the developer as being "drought resistant."

Given the developer's self-imposed restrictions and budget, I'm not sure any amount of architectural tweaking can help. It's the big picture that has to be looked at.


Another reason for Rent Control.
Another reason for a Public Work's second-"Outside Tree Opinion."
Believe it or not, a City of Burlingame Tree can stop a multi-million dollar Real Estate project.

I wonder who is watching Public Work Inspectors?
There will never be a "Good" Neighborhood between Broadway-Peninsula-ECR and the Barrier Wall.
Thank you Jennifer. Your ability to cut through BS, present info for people who just do not see anything but Headlines,l is a very valuable contribution to the people who care.


Jennifer for council.


I was at the meeting also and thanks to everyone for attending and voicing their opinion.

It was pretty clear that all the attendees thought this was another rack and stack developer to fit as many units as possible at the maximize their profit, with little concern to enhance or foster the community at all. How does this developer expect to be accepted in the community when they only expect to take from the community and don't have a concept of giving back and making the community better?

The title of this article is correct, and Laura statement is a spot on example. This area needs help with everything that is going on, and it's not clear to me where city council is on all of this yet.

Bruce Dickinson

Folks, not to belabor the point too much, but Bruce Dickinson must emphasize that the developers don't care about "community acceptance". The only acceptance they care about are people who pay for their newly built units!

The city council, as far as yours truly is concerned, is the biggest enabler of all this nonsense. It is being advised by city personnel that keep telling them we must keep developing or lose transportation funds and other grants from the MTC, supra-regional authorities, and other State forces that practically threaten cities into stepping in line.

Of course, this is only possible with a council that either believes everything coming out of city staff, or just as bad, know we have the ability to fight back, but instead choose the path of least-resistance, because it is easy for quasi-volunteer work and fundamentally conflicts with their own financial interests.

So the (rhetorical) question is how is Hillsborough not having to meet housing "needs" requirements? The answer is simple: Burlingame, San Mateo and other cities that make up the Association of Bay Area Governments allow themselves to absorb Hillsborough's share in private negotiations that nobody sees.

Folks, if you want to really change things, you must brandish the weapon of repealing and replacing city council members during election time! Let them know that how they decide such matters will directly affect their re-election success and hurt them where it hurts most: as we all know, many have direct and indirect real estate and local business interests that are made more valuable by their positions.

Time to take power back and make Burlingame great again!


Make Burlingame Great Again?
Thank you Mr. Dickenson for your observations and sharing.
As long as the City Manager sits at the pleasure of the City Elders, there is no way for the voters of Burlingame to begin to correct the past years of dysfunction, as well as stop the future plans from going forward.
Catch 22.
Thank you again Mr. Dickenson.

Grace Sanborn

This will steal from you the beautiful views you have of the Hillsborough hills and the open air looking East.

If you guys let these large developments in here you will close your City in and then the stress-levels begin.

I support growth but this city is beginning to look like a San Francisco and all the negatives it brings with it.


And....all this development now requires a full interchange at Peninsula. Meeting tonight at Burlingame Rec Center @ 6:30 regarding this project.
Tommorow @ 6:30 San Mateo City Hall.

Be there and create a storm or forget about it!
Read article in today's DJ

Derk Nilruvian

Great input Grace Sanborn. These views are part of preserving the value of your homes. You box people in with these cheaply-built complexes and the value of your homes will decrease.

All this high density has already created a clear rise in local crime rates. Is this what Burlingame wants?

Bay Area's Sancuary City status is one of the main causes for low wages and crime:

There are currently approximately 2.1 million legal or illegal immigrants with criminal convictions living free or behind bars in the U.S., according to ICE's Secure Communities office. Each year, about 900,000 legal and illegal immigrants are arrested, and 700,000 are released from jail, prison, or probation. ICE estimates that there are more than 1.2 million criminal aliens at large in the U.S.


The Daily Journal describes the Monday Planning Commission meeting on the Lyon Hoag project:

How a proposal to build a 138-unit apartment complex at 920 Bayswater Ave. and six adjacent parcels in Burlingame could be scaled back and adjusted to better fit with its surroundings generated more questions than answers for Burlingame planning commissioners and residents Monday.

Commissioners considered at least 30 written comments, a petition with 215 names of residents concerned about the project as well as several spoken comments, when they recommended the developer revisit the proposed structure’s massing, effect on parking and traffic on nearby streets and role as a transition from the city’s downtown to a more residential area in the city’s Lyon Hoag neighborhood between Highway 101 and the Caltrain tracks.




Why would the Burlingame Planning Commission even consider a four-story apartment complex at 920 Bayswater Ave. in Burlingame in a neighborhood of homes, duplexes and two-story apartment buildings? (“Proposal aims for 140 downtown Burlingame units” in the March 3 edition of the Daily Journal). It makes absolutely no sense and will set a terrible precedent for future development. Once it is in, you may find yourself with one right next to your own home. Zoning laws were made to protect us and they need to be enforced with no special treatment. Two stories with underground parking is appropriate and the only reason to have more is pure greed. This letter may seem late but since my property which is a block away did not receive notice of the meeting, I had to read about it in the paper.

Debbie Sandino



It would appear we are getting down to the "short strokes" on this project. The DJ reports:

"The Burlingame Planning Commission unanimously voted during a meeting Monday, Nov. 26, to withhold their previous OK of a proposal to build 128 units along Bayswater Avenue and Myrtle Road.

The desire by Fore Property Company to construct the units using vinyl windows lies at the heart of concerns shared by commissioners, who felt the materials were not suitable for such a notable development."


Further discussion goes on to say:

"In defense of the proposed materials, applicant Mark Pilarczyk said the windows were the highest quality vinyl product offered by a reputable manufacturer, and that they offered noise protections commensurate with standards set by state environmental quality law. He also noted they are the same windows proposed to be used in a SummerHill project on Carolan Avenue where 288 units are being built.

Officials also shared concerns around the potential for setting precedent in allowing developers to use vinyl windows, noting there are other sizable projects in the construction pipeline whose developers may wish to build with similar materials."

I get the precedent setting-and-then-following aspect of this, but if they made a mistake in the past, the sooner it is rectified the better.


The Future Tenants have many Thanks to give to the city of Burlingame Planning Committee, and they may never know it.
The Developer will have ZERO responsibility once the Building is started.
Other than having Natural Sunlight in a $3000.00 a month one Bedroom Rental, being that close to SFO, Cal Train, HWY 101,any window/door may deserve to be "Bricked Up."
I am so glad I do not have to worry about that Crap anymore.
I have always hoped/believed that "the people" after me would not have to go through this BS just to pay bills.
Work to Home.
Home to Work.


The buildings were demolished and the ground prepared for construction and the developer just pulled the plug on the residential development on the corner of Myrtle and Bayswater. Was told that after crunching the numbers with the current rental rates coming down, that it didn't make sense and they decided to take their losses and stop the project. I believe they are shopping it to other developers. Does this mean we start over?

Barking Dog

Wow. Thanks for the update Laura.

I would seem to think that it is a start over as I am guessing a new developer would have to go through the same process with the Planning Commission to get their project approved to start construction.


“current rental rates coming down...”


Cassandra, more like slowing down. Wrong choice of words. It didn't pencil out. Needed more units I believe.


Wow. While I do love open space I hope the city cracks down on them to at least put in some grass and security. What a waste. Their pencil must not have been all that sharp to begin with. Who is the developer so I know which stock to short?

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