Learning Center
Plans & pricing Sign in
Sign Out

Land Victories for Open Space and Transit


									                                                                                                                                Affordable Housing page 8
The Newsletter of Greenbelt Alliance

The Bay Area’s Land Conservation and Urban Planning Non-Profit                                                                Winter 2001

Inside…                                           Landslide Victories for
It’s a Wonderful Life
                      How healthy main
                      streets help preserve
                                                  Open Space and Transit
                      the greenbelt.
                      page 4

Ramon, Chris, Jaimie, and. . .
The power behind
Greenbelt Alliance.
page 6

                I Came from a
                Sedentary Family
                One woman’s introduction to
                Bay Area hiking. page 7

The fruits of open space protection. page 3       Beautiful: across around the Bay Area, open space won, traffic lost.

                                                                                                                 Greenline to Stop Sprawl in San Jose: 81% support

                                                        an Francisco Bay Area voters fed up with traffic      •

                                                        and sprawl gave decisive victories to seven key          for Measure K, a measure to strengthen San Jose’s
                                                        growth management and public transit meas-               existing City Council-approved urban growth
                                                  ures in November. They sent a clear message that               boundary, or Greenline, which protects hillsides
                                                  they will not tolerate the gridlock and destruction of         and baylands from urban development. Through
                                                  open space gripping the region from Silicon Valley             its San Jose field office, staffed by South Bay native
You’re Missing Out...                             to the rolling hills of Sonoma County.                         Autumn Bernstein, Greenbelt Alliance helped lead
if you’re not subscribing to our e-mail                                                                          a broad-based coalition to approve this measure.
newsletter. To get timely news on issues in       Seven of eight open space protection and transit
your area and schedules of our Greenbelt                                                                         Alameda County Open Space Measure Prevails:
                                                  measures backed by Greenbelt Alliance passed, all          •
and Urban Outings, send your e-mail and                                                                          57% support for Measure D, a measure to protect
                                                  with resounding majorities, in some cases exceeding
postal addresses to                                                                           the beautiful rolling hills of the eastern part of the
                                                  80% of the vote.
                                                                                                                 county and to help direct investment into older,
                                                  “Voters get it. They know that the answer to traffic            existing communities instead of into new sprawl
                                                  congestion is not more roads, but more public tran-            development. Evelyn Stivers in our Walnut Creek
                                                  sit and better city planning. They know that unless            office supported the Sierra Club-led coalition that
                                                  we say no to sprawl, our famous Bay Area quality of            campaigned for the measure and helped defeat
                                                  life will be paved over for good. The people have              the developer-backed rival Measure C.
                                                  spoken resoundingly in favor of open space protec-
                                                  tion, smart growth, and good public transit,” said         •   Dublin Protects Ridgelands: 59% support for
                                                  Tom Steinbach, executive director of Greenbelt                 Measure M, a measure to preserve the beautiful
                                                  Alliance.                                                      rolling hills that are a key part of their city’s quality
                                                                                                                 of life.
                                                  With the addition of November’s victories, 19 Bay
                                                  Area cities have established urban growth bound-           •   City of Sonoma Passes Urban Growth Boundary:
                                                  aries to control sprawl.                                       64% support for Measure S, an initiative to protect
                                                                                                                 open space around the city and encourage smart
                                                  Greenbelt Alliance helped bring about transit and              growth within already developed areas.
                                                  open space successes including:
                                                                                                             •   Rohnert Park Says No to Sprawl with Measure N:
                                                  •   Landslide Victory for Transit in Alameda County:           71% support for Measure N, an urban growth
                                                      81% support for Measure B, a sales tax funding             boundary to preserve the greenbelt around the
                                                      BART, buses, and roads, with a heavy emphasis on           city. Now every city in Sonoma County except
                                                      express and local bus lines and unprecedented              Cloverdale has an urban growth boundary.
                                                      amounts for pedestrian and bicycle safety. Kudos to
                                                      Transportation Choices Forum and the Bay Area          A single defeat: While Bay Area voters showed across
                                                      Transportation and Land Use Coalition (BATLUC)         the board that they want to protect open space and
April 22-28: Join our spectacular annual Go
Greenbelt round-the-Bay Area bike ride to raise       for their leadership.                                  slow sprawl, just one of the eight initiatives backed
money and open space awareness. Or sponsor                                                                   by Greenbelt Alliance failed to pass.
a rider.                                          •   Transit-Only Sales Tax Wins in Santa Clara County:
                                                      70% support for Measure A, a sales tax to bring        •   Sonoma County Farmland Protection Measure Fails:
f For more information and photo gallery,             BART to San Jose and fund light rail and buses. As         43% support for Measure I, a measure that would
visit the events section of www.greenbelt.            the measure is implemented, Greenbelt Alliance             have made it more difficult to transform farmland
org or call 415-398-3730.                             will be pushing for pedestrian-friendly, transit-          into sprawl development. Sonoma County has
                                                      oriented development and improved bus service.                                            continued on page 3
                                                        Conservation Partnership Formed

                                                                isco Systems is planning to build a controver-   suits against the project. While other groups pursue
                                                                sial project that will bring 20,000 employees    this route, we feel that Greenbelt Alliance’s most
                                                                to Coyote Valley, in the southern part of        effective role is to work on other fronts— by pursu-
          “Greenbelt Alliance has been                  San Jose, inside the city’s urban growth boundary.       ing a dual strategy of political advocacy and direct
          vocal in criticizing aspects of               Greenbelt Alliance has been advocating for major         negotiations with Cisco. We continue to meet with
                                                        changes in this 6.6 million-square foot project in       our environmental allies to keep them informed
      Cisco’s plan . . . At the same time,              order to address the traffic and housing pressures it     about the Conservation Partnership.
           the upside potential of the                  will create.
                                                                                                                 By helping lead the Conservation Partnership,
       Conservation Partnership is enor-                Greenbelt Alliance believes that existing patterns of    Greenbelt Alliance has helped leverage the following:
        mous. It will be a first-of-a-kind               office development—land-wasting low-rise buildings
         private, public, and non-profit                 surrounded by huge surface parking lots—are envi-        •   Cisco Systems will donate $3 million to the
                                                        ronmentally destructive. Widely separated from               Conservation Partnership for open space protec-
      collaboration to protect open space               housing, stores, and services, the office “campuses”          tion and has committed to help raise a total of
        and promote sensible growth...”                 that cover the region are a major cause of traffic            $100 million from private and public sources. The
                                                        gridlock and loss of open space. Greenbelt Alliance          funds will be used by the Santa Clara County Open
                                                        has been advocating publicly for changes in Cisco’s          Space Authority and other groups to permanently
                   OCT. 19, 2000
                                                        project to make it more environmentally sound. We            protect an estimated 45,000 acres of open space.
                                                        have also been engaged for much of the past year in
      f For the complete editorial, our letter          negotiations with Cisco Systems and the Santa Clara
                                                        County Open Space Authority. Our goal has been to
                                                                                                                 •   Cisco Systems will pursue smart growth-oriented
                                                                                                                     design including incorporating public transit sta-
      to the city council, and the complete text
      of the Partnership Agreement, visit               find collaborative solutions to preserving open               tions into the site and locating 65% of buildings Click on “News” and            space, addressing the region’s housing shortage, and         within walking distance of transit hubs. It will also
      scroll down to the “Cisco” section.               making the Cisco site more environmentally friendly.         follow energy-efficient green building principles.

                                                        As a result of these discussions, we have entered        •   Cisco and Greenbelt Alliance are participating in
                                                        into a groundbreaking Conservation Partnership               Mayor Ron Gonzales’ San Jose Housing Production
                                                        that we hope will become a model for cooperation             Team to investigate opportunities for constructing
                                                        among environmental groups, business, and the                new infill smart growth-oriented housing, includ-
                                                        public sector. Other environmental groups that               ing affordable housing, near major job centers
                                                        share our concerns about the Cisco development               throughout San Jose.
                                                        have used a different strategy, opting to bring law-

                                                                       Sunday, October 22, 2000

 Cisco planners must be creative
                                                        ple. North Coyote Valley will be the size of a           to be distant from housing and the necessities of
               BY TOM STEINBACH
                                                        town. It should look and function like a town —          daily life.

  S      ILICON Valley is facing a traffic and hous-     with housing, jobs, and stores— not like a ster-              San Jose’s planners are admired throughout
         ing crisis of massive proportions. At a time   ile, car-dependent industrial park. That outdat-         the region for their forward-thinking approach-
         like this, everyone has to contribute to       ed model has been shown again and again to               es to infill and transit-oriented development. It
  solutions — business, government and citizens         contribute vastly to air pollution, traffic, the          is time to use that same creativity in Coyote
  alike. At Greenbelt Alliance, for more than 40        destruction of open space, and a breakdown of            Valley.
  years we have been working collaboratively with       community relationships.                                     Citizens need to demand that our local gov-
  a variety of groups to preserve open space and            We have been pushing Cisco to help build a           ernments stop encouraging monster office
  encourage thoughtful urban planning through-          community, not just a bunch of isolated offices.          parks. Our laws don’t permit corporations to
  out the Bay Area. Last week, we entered into an       We want North Coyote Valley to have housing,             spew toxins into the air or water from their fac-
  innovative conservation partnership with Cisco        retail, and walkable streets that make it easier         tories. And yet we not only allow, but encourage
  Systems and the Santa Clara County Open Space         and more pleasant to get to work by train, light         businesses to generate huge amounts of air and
  Authority to find solutions together.                  rail, bicycle or bus than by car.                        water pollution in the way they build their
     Through this partnership we will save 45,000           Cisco has taken some positive steps so far. It       offices.
  acres of critical open space and farmland in sur-     has, for example, incorporated future Caltrain               People are complacent because the polluting
  rounding areas. We will also work with the            and light rail hubs into its site plan, and clus-        facilities don’t look like factories. But those
  mayor of San Jose to address the region’s hous-       tered some of the buildings around a main                clean-looking, low-density, auto-dependent office
  ing crisis.                                           street.                                                  parks are destroying open space, contaminating
     We are proud of this partnership. However,             But, for the most part, Cisco’s current plan is      our air and water and worsening our traffic
  we have not endorsed Cisco’s plans for an office       a sea of asphalt dotted with widely scattered            nightmare at an astonishing rate. It doesn’t have
  campus in Coyote Valley, and we believe, as we        office buildings. There is no housing on the site,        to be this way.
  have elaborated in our public comments to the         nor public restaurants or stores. The entire                 We hope that Cisco will help build a real town
  planning commission and city council (available       development remains overwhelmingly automo-               in Coyote Valley, and not just a gargantuan,
  at, that much needs to be          bile-centric. Cisco is a 21st-century technology         asphalt-paved knowledge factory with 20,000
  done to make the campus more environmentally          leader building office parks mired in the bad             smokestacks — the tailpipes of the cars of its
  friendly.                                             design patterns of the 1970s.                            employees. And we hope that the leaders of San
     We are not planning to bring a lawsuit against         But Cisco can’t escape these disco-era designs       Jose will make it possible.
  the project; we believe it is more productive to      on its own. In fact, Cisco — or any developer —
  work on two fronts: through the political process     is prohibited from putting housing, grocery
                                                                                                                 Tom Steinbach is executive director of the Greenbelt
  and through direct discussions with Cisco.            stores, or public restaurants on the site by San
                                                                                                                 Alliance, a Bay Area land conservation and urban
     Cisco’s massive 6.6-million-square-foot office      Jose’s general plan, which designates the site as
                                                                                                                 planning non-profit organization, with of fices in San
  park with 20,000 employees will be the core of a      ``campus industrial.’’ Now is the time for the city
                                                                                                                 Jose, San Francisco, Walnut Creek and Santa Rosa.
  job center that will eventually attract 50,000 peo-   to discard this outdated model that forces jobs

Taste of the Greenbelt a Savory Success                                                                            THE VENDORS WHO MADE IT POSSIBLE

                                                                                                                   Ann Walker Catering, Aqui, Bizou, Bucci’s, Cafe

          Taste of the Greenbelt was a savory success,    of Beyond Organic and Frankie Whitman; and
          featuring the best wines, microbrews, and       the more than 150 volunteers who made the event          Cuvee, Café Trio, Hayes Street Grill, Jazzroots,
                                                                                                                   Lark Creek San Mateo, Montage, Pinxtos, Renni
          food in the region. More than 500 friends       a success.
                                                                                                                   Lyn Burge, Rose Pistola, Santa Clara County
of open space gathered at two great events, one at                                                                 Cattle Women, Whole Foods, The Basin
the Opera House in Los Gatos and the other at the                                                                  Restaurant, Viaggio, Wild Thyme Café, Vital
Golden Gate Club at San Francisco’s Presidio. For                                                                  Vittles Bakery, Adler Fels, Barefoot Cellars,
the first time, fine photography and art was featured                                                                Belvedere Winery, Bonny Doon Vineyard,
for sale. These artistic images of Bay Area land-                                                                  Chalone Vineyard, Chateau St. Jean, Cinnabar
scapes depicted just what is at stake in our fight                                                                  Vineyards & Winery, Cloniger, Davis Bynum,
against sprawl. A grand total of $25,000 was raised                                                                Hanna Estates, Smith & Hook Winer y, Kathryn
                                                                                                                   Kennedy Winery, J. Lohr, Matanzas Creek,
to protect the Bay Area’s green spaces, including
                                                                                                                   Mazzocco Vineyards, Mount Eden Vineyards,
the rich farmland that produces the bounty of food                                                                 Picchetti Winery, Ravenswood, Ridge Vineyards,
and wine that was enjoyed.                                                                                         Savannah-Chanelle Vineyards, Schramsberg
                                                                                                                   Vineyards, Silver Mountain Vineyards, V. Sattui
                         Thanks to all the members                                                                 Winery, Wente Vineyards, Bison Brewing
                         and their friends who attend-                                                             Company, Rhyne Cyder, Wolaver’s Organic Ales,
                         ed, and to the generous                                                                   Magnolia Pub & Brewery, San Francisco Brewing
                                                                                                                   Company, Frog Hollow Farm, C.J. Olson Cherries,
vendors who donated to the event (see sidebar).
                                                                                                                   Del Fresh Produce, Eatwell Farm, Farm Fresh to
Thanks also to photographers Robert Buelteman,                                                                     You, From the Ground/America Fresh, J&P
Matt O’Brien, Sidney J.P. Hollister, Nick Pavloff, E.                                                              Farms, Greenleaf Produce, Sonoma Cheese
Loren Soderberg, and Galen Rowell; the BayWood            Delicious: Food by Wendy Armstrong and Scott Warner      Factory, June Taylor Baking Company, Gotta
Artists; our stellar event coordinators Michael Straus    of Rose Pistola.                                         Havit and Peet’s Coffee and Teas.

Vicki Moore Leaves Legacy of Land
Conservation and Community-Building

    n October, we bid a sad but proud farewell to             the Joint Venture Silicon Valley Civic Action
    Policy Director Vicki Moore, who retired to               Network
    spend more time with her family and pursue an
interest in environmental education after twelve          •   Providing environmental leadership to the Santa
years with Greenbelt Alliance. Vicki leaves a legacy          Clara County Housing Action Coalition and other
of open space protection and smart growth planning            housing advocacy groups
that has made the South Bay— and the entire Bay
Area — a better place.                                    •   Leading our Compact Development Endorsement
                                                              Program, supporting scores of well-located, smart
Starting when she was just 26 and a lone ranger               growth-oriented housing and mixed-use projects
opening up Greenbelt Alliance’s first tiny field office
in San Jose in 1988, Vicki quickly established a repu-    •   Advocating for smart growth and open space pro-                        Vicki Moore
tation for quiet persistence and an ability to get            tection policies in the Santa Clara County General
diverse parties to the table. First as our South Bay          Plan and city general plans                            “Vicki Moore is unique in that
representative and later as Policy Director for the
entire Bay Area, Vicki helped keep open space pro-        Vicki established a model for our field work— engag-
                                                                                                                   she recognizes the nexus between a
tection on the agenda of city and county planners,        ing closely with citizens in local communities— that       sound economy and a beautiful
and educated a generation of elected officials in          is the foundation of the enormous success of our            environment. She is that rare
greenbelt and smart growth issues. Some of Vicki’s        field offices today. And she garnered rock-solid cred-
achievements include:                                     ibility and respect for Greenbelt Alliance by being            leader who can be both
                                                          seen as someone who was both reasonable and dedi-            a determined advocate and
•   Providing leadership for the creation the Santa       cated to standing her ground on important issues.
                                                                                                                           a consensus-builder.”
    Clara County Open Space Authority
                                                          “Vicki sees the big picture and knows how to
•   Helping pass urban growth boundaries to protect       understand issues from the perspectives of other           CARL GUARDINO, PRESIDENT AND CEO,
    open space in seven South Bay cities                  stakeholders,” said Don Weden, principal planner          SILICON VALLEY MANUFACTURING GROUP
                                                          with Santa Clara County.
•   Establishing our Livable Communities program,                                                                                         w
    helping make the connection between open              Said Greenbelt Alliance Executive Director Tom
    space protection and better use of our urban spaces   Steinbach: “Vicki has been a leader in smart growth
                                                          policy issues at both the state and local level,         Vicki Moore’s legacy of protected lands
•   Creating strong ties with business leaders, includ-   and always a steady hand in the face of enormous         includes:
    ing the Silicon Valley Manufacturing Group and        pressure. We will miss her.”                                         Mt. Hamilton foothills
                                                                                                                               Milpitas hillsides
                                                                                                                               Farmland around Gilroy and
                                                                                                                                  Morgan Hill
                                                                                                                               Bear Creek Redwoods
                                                                                                                               Union City ridgelines
Votes for Open Space                                      nate agricultural land for other uses. However, the                  Santa Cruz Mountain foothills
continued from page 1                                     farming community was divided on the measure,
some of the most productive farmland and vineyards        and a well-funded campaign by pro-development
in the Bay Area, which are rapidly being eaten up         interests helped defeat it.
by sprawling subdivisions as the booming regional
economy pushes jobs and housing northward. A              It remains clear, however, that Sonoma County
coalition of community members, farmers, and con-         residents don’t want to repeat the mistakes of
servation groups including Greenbelt Alliance cam-        Silicon Valley, and want to protect the still largely
paigned hard to pass the Rural Heritage Initiative,       rural nature of their county. Greenbelt Alliance will
or Measure I, which would have required a vote of         continue to work with citizens to control sprawl,
the people for general plan amendments to redesig-        protect open space, and address issues of traffic
                                                          and affordable housing.

winter 2001                                                                                                                                                       three
       Planning a Healthier Future:
       How You Can Help
       Encourage your local planning commission
                                                            Fighting Sprawl with Hea
       to approve moderate-density, mixed-use                          hen you think of small-
       buildings with housing and stores located in                    town America, you think of
       the same building or nearby.                                    Main Street: the neighbor -
                                                            hood drug store, the the barber, the
       Ask your city to rethink its parking require-        coffee shop, the five and dime. You
       ments. Instead of adding acres of pave -             see storefronts bumping up against
       ment, cities can limit traffic and parking            the sidewalk, buildings two or three
       problems by helping people live nearer their         stories high, and people: more than
       destinations.                                        anything, you see people walking,
                                                            chatting, or sitting on a bench just to
       Consider trading some square footage for a           watch the folks pass by.
       shorter commute if you are thinking of buy-
       ing a home. Location-efficient mortgages              It’s a safe place, a familiar place. It’s
       help people buy centrally-located homes by           also, when you examine it, a very
       figuring how much they save in transporta-            environmentally friendly place. Just
       tion costs. For information on location-             around the corner from the stores
       efficient mortgages, e-mail smoffat@green-            are houses and small apartment A recent study by the Surface              buildings, so many people shop on
       Transportation Policy Project showed that            foot. There are no huge parking lots,
       people in pedestrian- and transit-oriented           because they’re not needed. The
       cities such as El Cerrito and Mountain View          town has an edge, beyond which is
       can save up to $4,000 a year in transporta-          open space or farmland.
       tion costs compared to more auto-depend-
                                                                                                                        Child’s play: This neighborhood toy store in Petaluma helps
       ent cities.                                          Why don’t we build towns like this anymore? Why
                                                                                                                        street within walking distance of many homes. By contrast,
                                                            do we have to get in our cars just to pick up a quart       ing, is in effect accessible only by car: high walls, busy stre
       Urge your city to meet its responsibility for        of milk? Why do parking lots stretch as far as the eye
       building affordable housing according to the         can see? Part of the reason is that it’s actually illegal
       allocations set out by the Association of Bay        to build along the old small-town model in many             stores, there are walls or locked gates that make it
       Area Governments (see stor y, p. 8). The             places. Zoning regulations often require housing            difficult to walk from one place to the other. Even
       deadline for cities to prepare their plans,          and retail to be widely separated. Cities require           once you walk around the wall, you may have to
       called “housing elements,” is the end of             huge amounts of parking for each store or resi-             cross six lanes of a wide boulevard and a parking lot
       2001.                                                dence. These kinds of rules guarantee the vast acres        the size of a football field to get to your destination.
                                                            of asphalt that pollute our creeks and San Francisco        It doesn’t feel safe.
       Join one of our educational Urban Outings            Bay with runoff, and that make it difficult to walk to
       to see good examples of infill development,           the store even if you live nearby.                          Greenbelt Alliance is working to encourage cities to
       or help organize an Urban Outing in your                                                                         stop this kind of sprawl-inducing planning. We are
       town. Contact Julie Cummins at 415-398-              Try walking instead of driving around your town             urging compact, pedestrian-friendly development
       3730 or                      and you’ll see barriers to pedestrians you may have         including designs that cluster apartments, condos,
                                                            never noticed. In many suburban areas, even when            stores, and offices around transit hubs such as BART
       Join our Compact Development Endorse -               houses or apartments are within walking distance of         stations or bus centers. Many cities including San
       ment Program team to help us get good
       projects built. We evaluate proposed proj -
       ects and if they meet our requirements for
       compact, transit-oriented development we
       offer an endorsement that often helps the
       development get through the local applica-
                                                            Infill in Berkeley? Mooo! An U
       tion process. Contact Janet Stone at

                                                                 love my neighborhood in central Berkeley. It’s         Greenbelt Alliance board member Bob Johnson, I or 415-398-3730.
                                                                 got a friendly feel and a mix of houses, apart-        organized a stroll in November as part of Greenbelt
                                                                 ments, and stores. But when I started studying         Alliance’s Urban Outings Program.
       Visit the Livable Communities section of
                                                            how the area has developed, I found that plans for
       our website at We’ve
                                                            almost every new building over the years has been           Berkeley added about 20,000 jobs between 1970 and
       got self-guided tours of smart growth ideas
                                                            fraught with controversy. Leafing through the news-          1990, but the city’s population has remained stable
       in Bay Area cities and links to other organi-
                                                            paper clippings at the library, I was surprised at the      since 1960s. Because for years we added virtually no
       zations working on these issues.
                                                            vociferous opposition to buildings that my neighbors        new housing stock to accommodate the new workers,

                          w                                 and I now feel are an attractive part of the community.

                                                            There are some nice-looking apartments around the
                                                                                                                        many of them are forced to live in distant sprawl
                                                                                                                        developments, worsening traffic congestion.
                                                                                                                        However, Berkeley is slowly reversing this trend; some
                                                            corner from me. I didn’t know they were low-income          attractive multi-family housing has been built in
                                                            housing until I did some research. And I found that         recent years and there are plans for additional units.
                                                            the apartments had once been a run-down motel
                                                            plagued with prostitution and drugs. And yet, when          We visited two mixed-use projects currently under
                                                            there were plans to convert it to low-income hous-          construction in downtown Berkeley that will add 150
                                                            ing, there was fierce opposition from neighbors. Now,        units of rental housing, stores, and a cultural center.
                                                            I think just about everyone agrees the building and its     One of these, the GAIA Building, has been contro-
                                                            residents are a positive part of the neighborhood.          versial because it is seven stories tall. I think the
                                                                                                                        Italianate style will make it a striking building that
                                                            Berkeley is not unique; the same scenario is repeated       fits in well with the neighborhood. When I look at
                                                            time after time in cities around the Bay Area. While        cities, it’s not the height of buildings that makes
                                                            Bay Area voters have often supported measures to            them assets or eyesores, but their design.
                                                            limit sprawl, even progressive cities like Berkeley
                                                            find it difficult to take the most critical step toward       About a half-mile west of downtown, we visited
                                                            preserving open space: building moderate-density            Berkeley co-housing, condos built by the University
       Vallejo: A recent Greenbelt Alliance Urban           “infill” housing in already-urbanized areas.                 of California for professors and staff, and two good-
       Outing highlighted this city’s efforts to revital-                                                               looking low-income housing developments. Again,
       ize its downtown.                                    I really like the infill development that has been           each of these projects was bitterly fought by neigh-
                                                            constructed in my neighborhood, and I wanted to             borhood residents but is now an integral part of the
                                                            share the good ideas in practice here. So along with        community.

althy Main Streets

 ce traffic congestion because it is located on a human-scaled main
  sprawl-style shopping center, although located very close to hous-
 and vast parking lots separate the stores from the houses.

           Jose, Hayward, and Walnut Creek are focusing some
           of their planning in this way. Mountain View is a city
           that has revitalized itself by smart planning around
           its CalTrain station.

           If you’d like to help your city plan for a less auto-
           dependent, asphalt-choked future, contact our
           Livable Communities Director, Janet Stone at 415-
           398-3730 or

                                         Hand in hand: open space like these
                                           hills (above right) are protected by
                                       thriving, compact downtowns like this
                                                       one in Petaluma (right).

  ban Outing
           Good planning for infill should also include parks
           and open space. So we also looked at Strawberry
           Creek Park, which includes a block-long section of
           creek daylighted in 1982, and discussed plans for
           turning parts of the Santa Fe Railroad right-of-way                    Johnny Wants to Walk
           into parks, paths, and community gardens.

           About 40 people attended the outing, including
           Greenbelt Alliance members and staff, community
           activists, infill developers and several members of the
           Berkeley planning commission. Speakers on the tour
           included Evan McDonald of Panoramic Interests,
           developer of mixed-use projects; James Coles of
           Resources for Community Development, a low-
           income housing developer; Carol Schemmerling of
           Urban Creeks Council, which works to restore
           creeks; and Steve Swanson of Berkeley Partners for
           Parks, which seeks to improve and expand the city’s
           park system. By bringing together community mem-
           bers to tour and discuss infill housing, I believe
           Greenbelt Alliance can respond to the questions and
           fears residents may have about new housing and per-
           haps relieve a bit of the pressure to build on our                     Most car trips aren’t caused by commuters. It’s people ferrying kids to school, going to
           precious open space.                                                   the post office, the doctor, and the grocery store. When children can walk to school as in
                                                                                  this scene in Albany, Alameda Co., traffic congestion and air pollution are reduced. “Why
           For information on upcoming urban outings and                          Johnny Can’t Walk to School” is a startling study that reveals why schools are too often
           descriptions of past outings, visit                 designed to discourage walking. It can be accessed through the Transportation section of
           — By Janet Byron, Greenbelt Alliance member                            our Livable Communities page at In compact towns like Albany, where
                                                                                  most houses are in walking distance of stores and services, residents save more than
                                                                                  $3,000 a year in transportation costs, according to a new study ranking transportation
                                                                                  costs for all Bay Area cities, also accessible through our website.

           winter 2001                                                                                                                                                        five
                                                     VO L U N T E E R S

                                                     The Power Behind
                                                     Greenbelt Alliance

                                                                                                                              4                                         5



                                                               e couldn’t do it without
                                                               you! Here are some of
                                                               the volunteers making a
                                                     difference for greenbelt protection:

                                                     1. As a civil engineer with a master’s degree in environ-   on the board of the Mid-Coast Parklands land trust. She is
                                                     mental science, Ramon Chia has long been interested in      also the author of three pamphlets, each called “A Perfect
                                                     land use issues. To help us with outreach, Ramon com-       Day in the Greenbelt.” These guides to hikes in Wunderlich
                                                     piled a database of Latino organizations, websites and      Park on the Peninsula, Tilden Park in the East Bay, and
                                                     media, and updated our Spanish-language fact sheets.        Tiburon in Marin County give directions for the hikes and
                                                     This research was useful background for Executive           tips on good places to eat afterwards, and are available
                                                     Director Tom Steinbach when he recently gave a tour on      at 415-398-3730.
                                                     Bay Area land use issues to emerging Latino political and
      Volunteers Needed!                             government leaders, part of our continuing partnership      5. Nicci Woodward, a student at San Francisco State
                                                     with Latino Issues Forum.                                   University, made a better resource for
      Mac Computer Guru (Walnut Creek,                                                                           citizens and Greenbelt Alliance members, helping staffers
          San Jose)                                  2,3. Outings interns Robynn Kuhlmann and Jaimie Atlas       update and improve our website.
                                                     helped get people out into the greenbelt by developing
      Outreach Activist (East Bay)                   curriculum and coordinating greenbelt and youth outings.    6. Volunteers from the Point of Transition Center help
      Youth Outings Leader                                                                                       us communicate with members by assisting with our
                                                     4. Chris Vogel is a passionate defender of the greenbelt    mailings once a week. Genie Lau, Yong-Shen Zhu, and
      Greenbelt Outings Leader
                                                     and a stalwart in our San Francisco office, helping with     Olga Santa Maria are some of the high school students
      Urban Outings Organizer                        everything from filing to proofreading. Chris, a retired     learning workplace skills while helping the greenbelt.
      Housing/Mixed Use Project Analyst              librarian who lives on the coast in San Mateo County, is

      Curriculum Designer
      Office Helper (S.F., Walnut Creek)

      f For more information, visit the Get          Affordable Housing                                          shops and restaurants on the ground floor and
      Involved section of or       continued from page 8                                       apartments above. If you organize mixed-use build-
      call Amy Tanner, Outreach Coordinator at       many families are now doubled or tripled up in small        ings like this around tree-lined, walkable streets and
      415-398-3730.                                  apartments and houses. Unfortunately, this crisis is        good transit, you not only provide housing, but cre-
                                                     too often invisible—unbearably crowded conditions           ate small town-style neighborhoods that are safer
                                                     sometimes hide behind suburban split-level facades.         and more attractive than what existed before.
      Wanted . . .                                                                                               Around transit hubs such as BART stations, it makes
                                                     What is visible is the endless gridlock along all of        sense to build at even higher densities so that more
      Camera (SLR preferred, but we’d welcome        our highways. From the sky, the ever-expanding car-         people can walk to the train and shop on foot
      any type)                                      pet of sprawl housing is also all too obvious. Now is       instead of adding to automobile traffic.
                                                     the time to act. The state is requiring every city to
                                                     find room to add more housing within its borders.            Citizens have to decide: where do we want the peo-
                                                     Every city must come up with a plan to achieve this,        ple who are so essential to our communities to live?
                                                     called a housing element, by December 2001. After           We can’t keep saying, Somewhere Else. Environmen-
                                                     ongoing discussions with each city, the Association of      talists, more than anyone, should be active afford-
                                                     Bay Area Governments has come up with housing               able housing advocates. That’s why we’ve joined
                                                     allocations for each city, which can be viewed at           with housing activists in the Fair Share Housing
                                            needs/        .     100K+ Campaign. This campaign, a project of the
                                                                                                                 Bay Area Transportation and Land Use Coalition,
                                                     Your city will be deciding where to put housing.            brings together Greenbelt Alliance, Urban Ecology,
                                                     Before you say “There isn’t any room!” take a look          the Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern
                                                     around your town. Almost every city and suburb has          California, and others to push for adding well over
                                                     vacant lots, little-used acres of parking, and aging        100,000 units of affordable housing within existing
                                                     commercial districts of fast-food joints and cheaply        Bay Area communities in the next six years. Please
                                                     constructed strip malls. We can take this wasted land       join us, and participate in your city’s efforts to form
                                                     and build attractive two- to four-story buildings with      an equitable and community-oriented housing ele-
                                                                                                                 ment in the next year.

Free Greenbelt Outings
The following is a partial list. To see complete, up-to-date outings, listings, and directions,
visit http:/ For reservations, call 415-255-3233.
                                                                                                                           P E O P L E    F O R   O P E N     S P A C E

Saturday, February 10                                         Saturday, February 24
                                                                                                                            Greenbelt Action is the quarterly newsletter of
Diablo’s Hidden Falls, Contra Costa County                    Sweet Sugarloaf Falls, Sonoma County                           GREENBELT ALLIANCE, the Bay Area’s
Hike along streams on Mt. Diablo’s lush north side.           Join us to experience the wonders of winter in the          leading land conservation and urban planning
Enjoy several incredible waterfalls and a visit to            moss-covered oak/fir woodland near Kenwood.                       non-profit organization, with offices in
                                                                                                                             San Francisco, San Jose, Santa Rosa and
Eagle Peak on this steep and challenging hike.                While some inhabitants are sleeping, observe the
                                                                                                                              Walnut Creek. Founded in 1958, we are
From 10 AM to 6 PM. Rating = A 9 C                            beauty of the rushing creek and 25-foot waterfall.           dedicated to protecting the region’s greenbelt
                                                              From 11 AM to 2:30 PM. Rating = E/M 3 A                        and enhancing the livability of our cities.
Sunday, February 11                                                                                                          Memberships begin at $35 and include a
                                                                                                                                 subscription to Greenbelt Action.
Cascading Carson Falls, Marin County                          Sunday, February 25
Discover a three-tiered waterfall, the highest of             Tumbling Tip-Toe Falls, Santa Clara County                                Board of Directors
which is 40 feet, while passing through oak/bay               Discover a sweet cataract fall in the hillsides of                              Officers
                                                                                                                                     Andrew Nash - President
woodland and grasslands along serpentine trails.              Portola Redwoods State Park in the Santa Cruz                      Michelle Yesney - Vice President
Waterfall wonders outside Fairfax. From 10 AM to              Mountains. Hike along a trail of green ferns and                      Betsy York - Vice President
2 PM. Rating = M/C 4 A                                        shady trees. Come just to enjoy this lovely waterfall             David Azevedo - Secretary-Treasurer
                                                              that will capture your heart. From 10 AM to 1 PM.            Lynn Bagley, Bob Berman, David Bomberger,
Saturday, February 17                                         Rating = E 2 A                                             Roberta Borgonovo, Andrew Butler, Peter Cohen,
                                                                                                                         Zach Cowan, Don Dickenson, Tina Duong, Volker
Go-Go-Go Greenbelt!, Alameda County                                                                                      Eisele, Marilyn Farley, Robert Hambrecht, Booker
Gear up those quads and learn about our annual                Sunday, February 25                                       Holton, Bud Johns, Robert E. Johnson, Vivian Kahn,
Go Greenbelt! bike tour on this perfect ride from             SF to Sausalito!, San Francisco and Marin Counties         Zoe Kersteen-Tucker, Jean McCown, Trish Mulvey,
                                                                                                                          Marcus O’Connell, Annette Rose, Cindy Rubin,
Rockridge BART into the rolling East Bay hills.               Leave your car behind and hike through the north-         Margaret Spaulding, Ellen Straus, Michele Stratton,
From 10 AM to 2 PM. Rating = M 35 C                           ern tier of San Francisco, across the Golden Gate         Dee Swanhuyser, Laney Thornton, George D. Tuttle,
                                                              Bridge, and on into beautiful Sausalito. Return to                          Gary Zimmerman
Sunday, February 18                                           San Francisco by ferry at sunset, with a spectacular
Waterfalls of Berkeley, Alameda County                        view of the Golden Gate and the city. From 11 AM                                  Staff
On this urban waterfall hike, discover three water-           to 6:45 PM. Rating = M 9 A                                        Tom Steinbach, Executive Director
                                                                                                                             Blair Alpert-Sandler, Systems Coordinator
falls along rushing creeks hidden in Berkeley neigh-                                                                     Autumn Bernstein, South Bay Field Representative
borhoods. Take in beautiful Bay vistas and learn              f To receive quarterly outings listings by email,                    Krista Brown, Office Manager
about historic homes. From 10 AM to 4 PM.                     send your name, e-mail address, and postal                       Julie Cummins, Outings Coordinator
                                                                                                                              Susan Moffat, Communications Director
Rating = M/C 8 A                                              address to                                     Tom Mooers, Field Director
                                                                                                                                    Vicki Moore, Policy Director
KEY The first letter indicates the degree of challenge: Easy Moderate Challenging Advanced Hard Core                          Anne Shelley, Director of Administration
                                                                                                                               Evelyn Stivers, East Bay Field Director
     The number indicates the number of miles covered.                                                                      Janet Stone, Livable Communities Director
                                                                                                                                Amy Tanner, Outreach Coordinator
     The second letter indicates Elevation Gain: A - Less than 1,000     B - 1,000 to 2,000 C - 2,000 to 3,000
                                                                                                                         Mike Tomlinson, Associate Development Director
                                                 D - 3,000 to 4,000      E - More than 4,000 feet                         Steve Van Landingham, Development Director
FOR EXAMPLE: A hike with a rating of C 7 B is a challenging, seven mile hike with an elevation gain between                       Rumika Wijetunga, Bookkeeper
             1,000 and 2,000 feet.
                                                                                                                                   Dorothy Erskine (1896-1982)

                                                                                                                               Please send comments and questions
                                                                                                                               about this newsletter to Susan Moffat,

A Hike That Changed My Life                                                                                                         Communications Director.
                                                                                                                                   For extra copies contact us at:
                                                                                                                     or 415-398-3730.

    t’s impossible to pick a “favorite” greenbelt hike;                                       Jeanne Nader, who later
    how does one choose between Oakland’s red-                                                became a close friend.
    wood forest, the panoramic view atop Angel
Island, or the rushing water on Mt. Tam’s Cataract                                         I quickly learned that
Trail? I can, however, select a most memorable hike.                                       7,000-acre Sunol
                                                                                           Regional Wilderness is
During the early 1990s, I somehow ended up on                                              just the tip of the Bay
a Greenbelt Alliance outing at Sunol Regional                                              Area greenbelt iceberg.
Wilderness in eastern Alameda County. This was                             Janet Byron     Greenbelt outings
during the early days of Greenbelt’s outing pro-                                           opened up for me a
gram. It was also during my early days as a hiker and         world of the Bay Area’s mountains, forests, creeks
nascent appreciater of open space.                            and farms, and taught me how special all these
                                                              places are and how tragic it would be to lose them.
Growing up on the East Coast in a mostly sedentary            I am so grateful to Greenbelt Alliance for this gift,
family, my exposure to nature was limited. We trav-           which was “presented” to me at Sunol.
eled quite a bit, but our idea of experiencing the
outdoors was driving the Grand Canyon and look-               Jeanne urged me to call her about volunteering that
ing over the edge, piling into the station wagon and          day, and I did. Since then I’ve been organizing and
heading for the next scenic vista point.                      leading outings all over the Bay Area. It continues
                                                              to give me great pleasure to take others out into the
The Sunol hike was in the spring. The hills were              greenbelt, in the hope that they will have similarly
green and pretty; the sky was clear and the streams           memorable and transforming experiences.
were rushing along. I had no idea there was so
much wilderness so close to Berkeley, Oakland and             Sunol Regional Wilderness, part of the East Bay           Grateful Dads: Greenbelt Alliance recently took
San Francisco. It was a good long hike and a beauti-          Regional Park District, features Alameda Creek and        this parents’ group on an outing to Angel Island,
ful day.                                                      the Little Yosemite gorge, as well as camping and         featuring talks on the history of this jewel of
                                                                                                                        the greenbelt by eco-historian Dave Schmidt.
                                                              backpacking sites, picnic areas and hiking trails.
                                                                                                                        If your group or company would like to arrange
Perhaps more important than the views were the                From I-680 going north, take Calaveras Road exit.
                                                                                                                        a Greenbelt Outing led by one of our volunteers,
people I met. Jim Sayer, Greenbelt Alliance’s commu-          Turn right on Calaveras and proceed to Geary              contact Susan Moffat at
nications director and later executive director, pointed      Road, which leads into the park. For information          or 415-398-3730.
out edible plants and talked about threats to the             call (510)562-PARK or go to http://www.ebparks.
greenbelt. Many others from the Greenbelt Alliance            org/. 0— By Janet Byron
staff were along including volunteer coordinator

winter 2001                                                                                                                                                                   seven
Greenbelt Alliance Launches
Affordable Housing Campaign
                                                                                                                     California just hasn’t been building enough housing
                                                                                                                     that’s affordable to ordinary working people, many
                                                                                                                     of whom qualify as low-income in our superheated
                                                                                                                     economy. The wrong housing has been built in the
                                                                                                                     wrong places. There are too many monster homes
                                                                                                                     sprawling over the once-beautiful hillsides, far away
                                                                                                                     from jobs. What we need are apartments for fami-
                                                                                                                     lies, seniors, young people, and the rest of the 43%
                                                                                                                     of the population who are renters, and we need to

                                                                                                                           Now is the time to act.
                                                                                                                          Well-located, well-designed
                                                                                                                               housing can help
                                                                                                                             preserve open space.
                                                                                                                     put them within walking distance of shopping and
                                                                                                                     public transit. We need centrally located townhouses
                                   Green kids: affordable housing is good for the environment — and children, too.   so that families who would rather have a shorter
                                                                                                                     commute than a bigger yard have that choice.

           here should we go? We’re the guy who           In too many Bay Area cities, we can’t afford to live
           fixes your car. The woman who nurtures          anywhere near our jobs. So, many of us have been           Production of multi-family housing dropped precipi-
           your toddler at the day care center.           transformed into unwilling road warriors, spending         tously in the 1990s. Only 28,000 units of multi-family
The people caring for your parents at a nursing           more time commuting than at home with our fami-            housing were added to California’s housing stock
home. The police officers, schoolteachers, secre-          lies. Our cars clog the freeways. Our homes often lie      annually in the 1990s, compared to 92,000 a year in
taries, garbage collectors, cashiers, city employees,     atop what was productive farmland and beautiful            the 1980s — a 69% drop, according to the California
and workers at non-profit organizations who all            open space. How did this happen?                           Budget Project’s study, “Locked Out.” As a result,
contribute in some way to our communities.                                                                                                              continued on page 6

                                                                                                                                                                         NON PROFIT


                                                                                                                                                                      U.S. POSTAGE PAID

                                                                                                                                                                      PERMIT NO. 9294
530 Bush Street, Suite 303
San Francisco, CA 94108                                                                                                                                              SAN FRANCISCO, CA

(415)398 -3730

Change Service Requested

Outgrowing California: Where Is the Boom Taking Us?
Feb. 8 -10: The 13th Annual California Studies Conference at the Oakland
Museum of California, featuring thinkers, writers, poets, and historians including
Kevin Starr, Gray Brechin, Gerald Haslam, Robert Hass, and many others. Call the
U.C. Berkeley Dept. of Geography for info, 510-642-3903.
                                                                                                                                                     Everything we print at
                                                                                                                                              Greenbelt Alliance is on recycled paper

To top