School board: Google needs to do more | News | Mountain View Online | – Mountain View Voice

School board: Google needs to do more | News | Mountain View Online | – Mountain View Voice

Mountain View Whisman school board members were underwhelmed last week by Google's latest offer for a future school in North Bayshore, a small property in the densest part of town that's likely to be beset on all sides by 15-story buildings. Board members also took a strong stance on financing construction at the March 7 meeting, making clear they were not interested in a bond measure to handle enrollment growth caused by the new development. If Google wants to build more offices and homes for its employees, they argued, then the company should fully foot the bill for the students it generates, they said. With an eye towards housing growth, the city of Mountain View recently revised its zoning to allow up to 9, 850 housing units in the tech park north of Highway 101. The area's largest land owner, Google, released its master plan in December for turning that zoning map into a reality, adding between 7, 200 and 8, 000 homes in total. What remains unclear is where a school -- or multiple schools -- would fit within Google's master plan. The initial proposal by the Mountain View-based tech giant was to provide land for a campus at ....

But lingering concerns still remain, and trustees said they are still not content with the offer. Chief among those concerns is that the zoning map allows for 15 stories of development on all four sides of the school site, which could create traffic and safety problems along with an "urban canyon" effect that would cast a nearly 24-hour shadow on the school's facilities. By comparison, a school located on the east side of Shoreline Boulevard would be surrounded by eight-story buildings, Superintendent Ayinde Rudolph told board members. Board member Devon Conley said the board should fully expect Google to build out the so-called Joaquin neighborhood of North Bayshore to the maximum 15-story heights, and that building a less dense school site in the middle is hardly ideal. "A school on a 2.5 acre site where the zoning code says you can go up to 15 stories could end up looking like the house from (the movie) 'Up, ' especially because we are constrained in how high we can go, " she said. Board member Jose Gutierrez sought a hardball approach to negotiations with Google, telling Rudolph to push for two school sites, 10 acres in size, and close to the ....

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