News roundup

San Jose is considering a new “Downtown North“. It will have 100,000 jobs, supposedly, and 24,700 new residences. Shades of Coyote Valley where, once again, San Jose is not providing housing to balance all the people it is trying to attract to the region. On the other hand, this development will destroy much less open space than Coyote Valley. We’ll have to think about what degree this is a CGF concern. Here is one concern however: Mayor Ron Gonzales said “he couldn’t recall why he decided to cut the developers the break” of having the City (read: taxpayers) instead of the developers pay for the costs of the $1 million environmental review. It’s very clear to us that developers, not the public should pay for the cost of reviewing their projects.

Los Altos Hills may require energy conservation in monster homes. Large homes would have to meet a tighter energy standard than smaller places under the proposal. This points out a significant problems with monster homes – besides eating up land and driving speculation, they consume more resources than reasonably-sized residences, for as long as the buildings are standing.

And on the subject of consuming energy, New Scientist reports that climate change culprits could face court, as damage from global warming becomes traceable to the industries that cause the warming. Global warming is another good issue for open space preservation, which promotes smart growth and energy-efficiency.


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