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In The News

Saltworks developer praising public polls

Daily Journal Staff Report, 8/5/10

The latest of a continuous stream of public polls shows 62 percent of queried San Mateo County voters favor the mix of housing and open space proposed for the Saltworks site in Redwood City, according to the developer.

Developer DMB has held several surveys and the latest — 600 voters between July 10 and July 13 — showed a margin of seven to three in favor of the so-called 50-50 Balanced Plan, according to Cargill.

The survey also showed 69 percent of those questions preferring an ongoing environmental review of the plan before determining its future.

The specific information given participants was, “the developer of the Industrial Saltworks site has filed a plan with Redwood City to redevelop this 1,400 acre industrial site. The plan is called the 50-50 Balanced Plan. It dedicates 50 percent of the 1,400-acre site for new parks and recreation uses, open space and restored tidal marsh areas. The remaining 50 percent would become a transit-oriented community with a range of housing, new schools and businesses. The plan would pay for itself with no new costs to taxpayers.”

The survey also asked participants to choose between three alternatives to the plans, which netted 69 percent in favor of a full EIR and garnering public input. Eighteen percent said to reject any development and 7 percent chose to raise taxes to buy and restore the site.

David Lewis, executive director of Save the Bay, which vocally opposes the development, dismissed the survey as “just the same old desperate PR stunt.”

The land in question is not industrial and the question doesn’t even mention that it falls on the Bay shoreline, he said.

Lewis questioned why the poll was released just after Redwood City Councilwoman Rosanne Foust was found to have a conflict of interest because she also heads a business group favoring development.

“They’re attempting to buy support and change the focus of the story,” Lewis said.


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