Wednesday, January 26, 2011

CGF-Coalition letter on Environmental Alternative for Bayside Water Treatment Plant

(CGF and a coalition of environmental groups sent the letter below last summer about the 2,600 acre wastewater treatment plant area north of Highway 237 that is currently undergoing master planning.  -Brian)

June 28, 2010

Matt Krupp, Project Planner
Water Pollution Control Plant Master Plan
Santa Clara San Jose Water Pollution Control Plant

Re: Water Pollution Control Plant Master Plan Alternatives

Dear Mr. Krupp,

We submit this position on the Water Pollution Control Plant Master Plan Alternatives on behalf
of Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society, Committee for Green Foothills, Loma Prieta Chapter of
the Sierra Club, Greenbelt Alliance, Save The Bay, Citizens Committee to Complete the Refuge,
Santa Clara County Creeks Coalition, Santa Clara Valley Chapter of the California Native Plant
Society, San Francisco Baykeeper, and the thousands of individuals we represent.

In May 2010, after a three-year effort, the planning team for the San Jose-Santa Clara Water
Pollution Control Plant (WPCP) revealed three land use alternatives for the Plant Master Plan.
While we appreciate the attempt to provide alternatives, the alternatives are so similar that they
fail to provide an adequate range of alternatives for good planning. The proposed alternatives
consist of the same elements at various proportions. We argue that the three presented
alternatives fail to analyze an adequate range of possibilities for the treatment plant land, and fall
short of the excellent planning we all hope for. All three alternatives inherently provide the same
option – significant development unrelated to the water treatment purpose of the plant, and
significant development unrelated to the current and historical ecology of the Bay, the land and
nature in the area.

Proper planning requires the development of a truly different alternative. We urge planners to
return to the drawing table and create an “Environment, Ecology and Water Alternative” that
would allow developed land uses solely for development addressing the water treatment purpose
of the plant. All other land uses should be based on the existing environment, view-sheds,
ecology, connectivity, the historic Bay ecology and environment, and recreational uses consistent
with the ecology and the nature of the land and its restoration.

Asking the public to select one of the three proposed alternatives channels the input by survey
participants to a predetermined set of very similar outcomes. The undersigned organizations
request that the planning team develop the fourth “Environment, Ecology and Water Alternative”
and offer it to the public for review.

Brian A. Schmidt                                         David Lewis
Legislative Advocate                                  Executive Director
Santa Clara County                                    SAVE THE BAY

Charles G. Schafer                                   Eileen P. McLaughlin
Chair, Executive Committee                     Advocate, San Jose Shoreline
Loma Prieta Chapter Sierra Club              Citizens Committee to Complete the Refuge

Michele Beasley                                      Mondy Lariz
Senior Field Representative,                    South Bay Director
Greenbelt Alliance                                 Santa Clara County Creeks Coalition

Shani Kleinhaus                                        Kevin Bryant
Environmental Advocate                           Chapter Council Chair
Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society         Santa Clara Valley Chapter
                                                               California Native Plant Society

Deb Self                                                  Hon. Clysta Seney
Executive Director                                 Former Director, District 3
SF Baykeeper,                                      Santa Clara County Open Space Authority

John Stufflebean, Director
City of Jose Environmental Services Department

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