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Movie theater proposed for San Antonio shopping center

Original post made on Mar 12, 2013

Developer Merlone Geier has significantly revised its proposal for phase two at San Antonio Shopping Center to include an eight-screen movie theater to go with a hotel and office building.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, March 12, 2013, 1:43 PM

Comments (76)

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Posted by Mark
a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 12, 2013 at 2:19 pm

The people running Merlone Geier are arrogant bullies who have tried to strong-arm their way through the entire project to the detriment of smaller business who "got in their way". SEVEN FLOORS HIGH??? I'll still shop at Trader Joes', but will otherwise avoid that side of the San Antonio Shopping Center IF ONLY so that I can still LOOK UP AND SEE THE SKY AND THE COASTAL MOUNTAIN RIDGES. Damn, just HOW MUCH $$$ is the City of Mountain View going to make off of this WAAAAAAAAAAAY too extensive and WAAAAAAAAAAAAY too tall of a shopping center complex? This megaproject is turning out to be a giant, ugly wart on the nose of Mountain View. The traffic around this area is BAD as it is, but with completion of this megaproject and the resultant huge increase in the number of cars in the area, the traffic WILL BECOME TRULY HORRID and the new San Antonion Shopping Center will be AVOIDED AT ALL COSTS by in-the-know locals.


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Posted by Sharon
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 12, 2013 at 2:29 pm

......and we haven't even begun to discuss the housing that is being built in this center that is so far out of the average person's budget! Most Mountain View'ers are already driving all the way to Milpitas to avoid the low-end, ghetto WalMart, and to Sunnyvale's downtown Target; why in the HECK would I want to come anywhere near this center, when Shoreline has a perfectly pleasant theatre?


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Posted by DJ
a resident of Martens-Carmelita
on Mar 12, 2013 at 2:53 pm

I live and work in Mountain View. I live at one end of Mountain View and work at the other end. Our office is on San Antonio Road. I am very happy with Phase 1. The quality of materials used in phase 1 is better than any other shopping center in Mountain View. It is filling up with high quality tenants.

What was replaced was a bunch of old tired worn out buildings. When you see a Gym as a major tenant in a shopping center (24 hour), you know that you have a dog of a center. Gyms can not afford to pay very much rent. So in phase two, we will get rid of old tired building (BevMo and Ross) and replace them with fresh new high quality buildings.

I hope that this change will effect the rest of the shopping center. Maybe we could actually get stores which produce revenue for the City instead of uses like a gym.


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Posted by Martin Omander
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 12, 2013 at 2:54 pm

Wow, some people really don't like this new development. Be glad that Mountain View is generating jobs and that people are moving here, rather than leaving. It makes sense to build housing near shopping and Caltrain.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 12, 2013 at 3:40 pm

Once upon a time San Antonio Shopping Center was a large tax producer, good shopping center, from the 50's to the early 90's growth and customer base grew and sales flow but the late 80's weren't kind.
S.A. center was a 3 box center the number of big departments, had some smaller national stores. Pretty good but the 80's rolled around, Malls went larger, smaller centers like Mayfield Mall closed, San Antonio was aging, still it remained strong until the 90's.

90's put San Antonio Center into a downward spin, Penneys closed, Wal Mart was built, Menu Tree closed, the center become less and less. The funny thing is I have always heard that Sears was going its location on San Antonio, but it remained open, then finally it too closed.

Like the idea of the mixed use project, more ground floor retail space, space for other services. Hotels are subject to a TOT, more city revenue, more visitors using the centers, more dollars. The building heights are lowered, whatever the height of a 6 story building seems to be the height limit. Height limits in feet will lead to a hotel and a office building having different floors.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 12, 2013 at 3:43 pm

One more thing, San Antonio Centers has been reinvented, this whole area is being reinvented, make it exciting, less car centered strip malls and run down single story buildings that have out lived their usefulness.


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Posted by AC
a resident of another community
on Mar 12, 2013 at 4:46 pm

AC is a registered user.

@Martin Omander,

Respectfully, I wouldn't mind if people left, and if we attracted fewer residents, and if there were less jobs. Only because I think we're getting too big as it is. The traffic is increasing, if you read about the backlash against bicycles it seems that we are not doing well in viable alternative transportation.

I think it's happening too fast, and we need to back off a bit.

Just an opinion, mind you; but I feel like these kneejerk growth spurts are really not well thought through; but all the while people are already working hard to make it happen.

Ever since the downtime was revamped, I have felt like Mountain View had a lot of the Los Altos charm without people having to be rich to live here. I thought it was a good thing, and I admit that I still do. It worries me to think of seeing Santana Row lookalikes everywhere. I really hope it doesn't change how good it is to live here. I've never left Mountain View since I moved to the Bay Area 20 years ago, because it's just been the best place to live. I'd like it to stay that way.


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Posted by Dr. Collateral
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 12, 2013 at 5:21 pm

Dr. Collateral is a registered user.

I, like AC, am utterly horrified to be living in a part of the country that has a thriving economy and is growing. I have actually given serious thought to moving to Detroit, where for the cost of a small house in Mountain View I could instead own an entire city block and never have to worry about overcrowding on the streets, in the stores, or in the schools. Added bonus: I wouldn't have to deal with people, though I would likely have to own several guns and fire extinguishers to protect my newfound estate.

What baffles me time and again is the attitude towards development of soon-to-be-derelict parts of town. That San Antonio lot was a dump prior to redevelopment - are we all really hankering for a the old days of a dying big-box Sears? The HP / Mayfield site is *still* a deserted office park a decade after I moved here. The old farm on Grant was, well, a *farm* in an area that hasn't seen largely scale agricultural use since steam trains were popular. And yet naysayers seem to prefer that the area go into some sort of genteel shabby decay (and that the Bay Area push development outwards into greenfield and actual agricultural areas south and east) instead of rejuvenating.

This "oh noes, too many peoples" attitude leads me to riff on an old joke. Developer: builds a house in the suburbs. Conservationist: owns a house in the suburbs.

And don't kid yourselves: if you've lived "here" since after the mid-80s, you are rich. If you think you are one of the "common people", I've got a lot of people in the east and south Bay Area that would like to have a word with you.


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Posted by FilmBuffs
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 12, 2013 at 5:23 pm

This area desperately needs more screens for independent and foreign films. A new theater would be great. Especially if it doesn't just show the Hollywood blockbusters that are available at Shoreline.


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Posted by Dr. Collateral
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 12, 2013 at 5:26 pm

Dr. Collateral is a registered user.

Re: "in-the-know" locals: this sounds like a bad reworking of a Yogi Berra quote: "Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded."

Honestly, if I gave have the commenters in this crowd lensless glasses, facial hair, and Pabst Blue Ribbon, I'd be hard-pressed to tell them apart from hipsters.


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Posted by Michael
a resident of Castro City
on Mar 12, 2013 at 7:16 pm

One site that I would recommend we demolish are all those funky looking apartments on California and Latham streets. Those neighborhoods are in need not of a face lift but more of a face transplant.[Portion removed due to disrespectful comment or offensive language]


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 12, 2013 at 9:31 pm

In time those funky old apartments on California St, Latham St and where ever I can think of them. I think a mix of single, row homes with flats and apartments, you just never know. Enough with bad driver that are Mexican, Asian and etc. I have seen bad drivers that are all races, genders and ages.


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Posted by Juan C
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 12, 2013 at 10:36 pm

The Council should consider public spaces, parks, schools, bike/pedestrian paths, and traffic, before approving any more construction.


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Posted by Cate
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 13, 2013 at 7:42 am

I think the development proposed is still too close to the street; it looks like the office building proposed for San Antonio Road is well off the road with multiple trees, but development along California only has one row of trees between it and the road. What is nice right now is that the parking lot along California is full of mature trees and it's not an eyesore when you drive or walk past. I'm not opposed to development, but this development does not look particularly attractive or integrated into the surrounding environment. I live right around the corner, and am sensitive to the fact that I'm going to have to look at this every single day. It would be nice to think that they'd make someplace people would want to walk through and spend time in, not just back into the road to maximize the space.


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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 13, 2013 at 9:49 am

HORRIBLE. I live in the Crossings, and the last thing I want is this huge, monstrous building looming over me on California Street & Pacchetti Way. It's way too tall for the narrow street.


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Posted by Jane
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 13, 2013 at 9:51 am

I urge the council to not make this deal with the devil. It will destroy the neighborhood and small, beloved businesses in the area like Milk Pail, which actually contribute to our health by providing a wonderful selection of fresh fruits and vegetables!! Please DO NOT DO THIS TO US!!


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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of another community
on Mar 13, 2013 at 10:13 am

This towering building is going to be smashed up against the street. Mountain View with a view of mountains? Forget it - this building will block the sun let alone the mountains...it's very depressing.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 13, 2013 at 10:52 am

Milk Pail will remain, see the diagram. I want the Milk Pail to remain, property changes hands all the time, so if you are leasing or renting space you mostly like will leave.

Building heights, I think 60 foot height is good, we already have a 6 story building on the site, that 70's building facing ECR. You could add a 7 story building inside a 60 foot height lime. See height of building and floor to ceiling height for either residential vs office.

Santana Row, Bay Street and other projects that are built are using ground floor retail with housing and office space on the upper floors. We do need some office space in Mountain View to off set what Google is doing.

Apartments, other units planned around San Antonio and else, we are talking about shuttles, lots of people will be around this side of town, extend light rail to San Antonio.

Los Altos School District should be working with a real estate agent for the propose to purchase land for a school or work with long term leasing of ground. Mountain View should be working on purchase space for park, maybe another fire station or some other city use.


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Posted by Zed
a resident of another community
on Mar 13, 2013 at 12:04 pm

On one side I understand people who say "oh no", but on another side they miss big picture. This is simply called urbanization, like it or not. This is inevitable. There is not much land and city's need revenue. This will bring jobs, traffic, more people and so on. In 5-10 years from now, you will even see more development all around: current Safaway, old Ditmer location, etc...


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Posted by Susan
a resident of Castro City
on Mar 13, 2013 at 3:24 pm

I was in meetings at the beginning of this discussion several years ago and applaud the revisions and considerations that the developers have made. I am not an advocate of huge retail centers but the care and good materials that are in evidence speak for themselves. 7 stories is NOT a skyscraper.

The new center will be very user-friendly, attractive and accessible. Humans don't like change and baby, this is a big change. City Council was very demanding that Mountain View receive the best benefit possible and I believe that the City will be better for this development. Jobs, revenue and an attractive place are hard to disagree with.


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Posted by the_punnisher
a resident of Whisman Station
on Mar 13, 2013 at 3:50 pm

Dog City, part 2.

When you play with fire, expect your fingers to get burned.


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Posted by John
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 13, 2013 at 8:16 pm

I'm curious about what we're going to get in return.
Dropping a huge complex into the middle of San Antonio/California without traffic mitigation?
The new apartments/stores haven't even opened yet, let alone the apartments by the car wash on ECR.
Where will all the traffic go?
Urbanization doesn't have to happen in such an unplanned way. There is a plan that was developed with great cost and time, and city is throwing it out the window for so called "gateway projects". Individual developers building without regard to community.
Dog city indeed


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Posted by John
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 13, 2013 at 8:20 pm

---and why do we need movie theaters when we have shoreline? All the "extra" tax just coming from someone else's pocket?
Besides the city just wastes it anyway.


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Posted by memberA
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 13, 2013 at 8:51 pm

We have lived in MV for 20 years and love it. We are glad to see new developements, renewing parts of the city. What we DONT LIKE is the ENORMITY of the projects !!! which is NOT congruous with this town, or our neighboring towns here. 7 STORIES is RIDIculous in this locaction!!
The traffic on San Antonio is already Horrible. how is this area going to accomodate THOUSANDS more people, incl no elementary school ? WE absolutely don't need an 8 screen cinema here. What we need is better planning, there are so many new developments in this area from all 3 towns (MV, LA, PA) that it is hard to keep track. We want buildings and centers that are set BAck from the streets, and are attractive**. with some open space to boot. Throw those developers back into the pot.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2013 at 9:41 am

Los Altos is getting Hotel, MV is still waiting.

Folks even the best planning can't control market forces, right now it seems that this corner is attracting businesses, entertainment and a chance at a hotel.

Wait to long, you will just a strip mall with some housing.


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Posted by John
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 14, 2013 at 10:46 am

This corner is attacting an out of town developer who is taking advantage of a lethargic city council. Along with Promo et al we are being run over without any compensation.

Los Alto school district is sounding alarmas over the out of control development and lack of compensation for schools, traffic, parks etc.

Movie theaters look like something the SF based grier would drop in Daly City. Oh they already did!


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2013 at 12:55 pm

Most everything built in the last 60 years has been built by a developer or some kind of investor related project. MG is in the business building space, when done will be filled with businesses. Now what businesses I don't but looking at those plans more then what is there now. I like the idea of the cinema, the hotel will come in handy.

LASD will need space for a school, who ever is in charge better get on the ball with each city inside the district. They have awhile before school age kids starting coming in even bigger numbers.

Parks and other open space can be planned, not all the property is under planning review not for sale. If a property comes up for sale, then purchase that land.


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Posted by Nick
a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2013 at 1:41 pm

These plans are a very big improvement over the ones previously submitted for Phase II.

I wouldn't count on Century 16 movie theatres being around forever. That facility is aging and sitting on a huge plot of land zoned for office uses in one of the most desired tech-campus districts in the world. A movie theatre at San Antonio Center next to a park, surrounded by shops and restaurants, will be a huge asset for Mountain View. A hotel that faces the new park will be a lovely place for out-of-town relatives to stay (finally!).

Regarding the buildings being too close to the street: It really depends on what's on the ground floor of the buildings and the width of the sidewalks. If the sidewalks are wide with nice street trees and the buildings have shops and restaurants facing the street, then people are more likely to walk there. If you push buildings back and surround them with parking lots, you create an unfriendly and boring environment that encourages driving. Just think about it - where do you see more people walking: Castro Street or Showers Drive?


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Posted by Cate
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 14, 2013 at 3:24 pm

1) What is this "park" people keep talking about? That bare strip of grass running down the Hetchy way? That's not much of a park, and shows, to me, very little in the way of imaginative open space planning.

2) Yes, the width of the sidewalks and first floor retail make a huge difference in how walkable some place feels. Does San Antonio Center look walkable so far to anyone? No. Those trees will take ages to reach any level of shade, the sidewalk is narrow, and the buildings do not open onto the sidewalk; most of them have their backs to the sidewalk. When you think of Castro Street, you think of all of the retail that opens on to the sidewalk, and the chance to sit outside a restaurant. Also, the traffic on Castro cannot be compared in any way to Showers, California, or San Antonio.

3) I'm no architect, nor am I a city planner. We're suppose to have people with those qualifications advising our city council and the developers. This development, so far, looks very unimaginative in terms of the architecture, and in terms of any green design that's being incorporated. We could have had a really progressive, environmentally sustainable, architecturally interesting development here, but nobody seems to have that vision. I don't see any solar panels, no green roofs, no water features, no electric charging stations, etc. No vision.

I get excited about new developments that are forward thinking, and this just feels stale.


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Posted by Ash
a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 14, 2013 at 3:53 pm

I am really excited for San antonio Shopping Center to get a face life, yes im not happy with the huge buildings taking over but i do hope this helps mountain view residents get jobs :) they should also give mountain view residents priority in getting hired


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2013 at 7:15 pm

I really think that these are just drawings just to show you something, nothing is set in stone, glass for any kind of materials.

Would love to see more style, more liveliness of the plazas, and walkways, remember this is still is a shopping center. It is more or less about trade of goods and services. I look at Phase as a anchor to the rest of the San Antonio Center or district.

It would be to great to see more urban parks, the little bit of green that you would never think but above parking garages, in between building projects or down the middle of the street. Think that be green space down Castro Street.

You would have rooftop café and deck on the hotel, why not create spaces at San Antonio shopping center south, make plans for older building that will most likely meet their end with a bulldozer.

Seriously a large plot of land for a school/park will be Target on Showers Drive, I am sure we can build a 2 story brand new Target store with a school next door. No land has to be taken over, just a long term lease with the owners. Think Palo Alto High School.


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Posted by John
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 14, 2013 at 7:40 pm

It'll all be built anyway, its a done deal. Our only choice is to try protect our neighborhood.


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Posted by dc
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 14, 2013 at 8:10 pm

Everyone has ideas of another Santana Row. However there is no Vally Fair across the street and Sunnyvale has there mall 70% completed (for 4 years now with apt and movies in the plan). So the only way Mtn View can succeed is to rid the area of low class stores to attract the better paying high class business. Lets hope Stanford shopper can tolerate the neighborhood.


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Posted by tommygee54
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 15, 2013 at 7:00 pm

The article says that there is 'A LOT OF DEMAND' for a movie theater complex. What happened to Century 16? Don't we have enough movie theater mega plexes around---especially with the Mercado 20 screens, plus the new Centure theater complex in Redwood City. Plus the mega plex at Valco!!! Perhaps Century 16 On Shoreline can be remodelled to sport stadium seating. But a demand for another semi megaplex on California Ave near the Milk Pail. Makes me wonder.

Also what makes me wonder is the mountain views; they are DISAPPEARING. Bring the mountain views back...!!!


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 15, 2013 at 7:26 pm

I think it is another company, if I am correct it might be the one out of Texas, very popular, one of the biggest profit making chains.
They offer food, drink and film, they have double features.


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Posted by pat
a resident of another community
on Mar 16, 2013 at 5:55 pm

If you're concerned about this humongous development and its impact on schools, traffic, services, water, the environment, etc. please sign this petition. You need not be a Mountain View resident.

Web Link Web Link
(Scroll down. Petition is in the right column.)


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 17, 2013 at 7:02 am

IMO. Phase 2 will attract school ages children but mostly as customers in what is a hotel, retail and office project. The increase of property taxes will help the LASD, also the MVLAUHSD.

Traffic has gotten bad on San Antonio Rd, but don't you the main cause could be 2 lane outdated interchange at 101. Phase 2 would generate car trips coming and going at different times.

While office projects are being planned in different parts of town, housing here and there. If you look at map most housing, the high density kind is centered along Central Expressway. Caltrain has 2 stops but nothing in the way of local.

Rex Manor, Monta Loma, Mayfield, Rengstroff, Shoreline Blvd will be some of the stops along with existing stops. Bus routes, shuttles and bike parking around stations will make riding a breeze. Live close enough walking is good.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 17, 2013 at 8:05 am

Forget the second posting it is the same as the first. Was going to be comment 2.

2,000 units are just planned, not all will be built. Some of the sites should have space for set asides for parks, plazas or other open space ideas.

A school site must be found, even if school is not built right now, site will be in place.

Different types of housing with good design standards, good materials and landscaping is a must.

San Antonio shopping center south still has big parking lots, couldn't we put some parking underground, build plaza on top.

Ice staking in the winter, craft shows, outdoor movies, music under the stars, grab a lunch and eat on the grass.


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Posted by Cate
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 17, 2013 at 6:34 pm

"Different types of housing with good design standards, good materials and landscaping is a must.

San Antonio shopping center south still has big parking lots, couldn't we put some parking underground, build plaza on top.

Ice staking in the winter, craft shows, outdoor movies, music under the stars, grab a lunch and eat on the grass."

Thank you Garrett. At least you're showing more imagination than the developer on how to engage the neighborhood.

Beware of thinking that these drawings are the start of a negotiation. Once you agree to anything, there is no turning back. We need to get this right the first time; we are going to be living with this for at least the next 25 years!


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 18, 2013 at 6:38 am

Just hope developers will listen but then again they, the developers are in the business to provide space. I don't know what the final project will be, drawings are meant to give an idea. We can approve concept, redesign the project so views, better open space dealt with.


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Posted by tommygee54
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 18, 2013 at 3:36 pm

Seems like Garrett is in the know on everything!!!


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 18, 2013 at 4:17 pm

I try to be, try to be open to change. I remember the importance of this shopping center, back in the 70's was in the top 5 in the county. Mayfield and Old Mill were in full swing.

Places decline, places renew.


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Posted by Single Pane Lass
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 18, 2013 at 4:37 pm

What do we have a city council for if they are not looking out for residents' basic safety? There have been numerous pedestrian deaths in the recent past and this project is only going to lead to more. I live close enough to this project to walk but it would be taking my life into my hands as it now stands. We need pedestrian friendly spaces in this town, not another movie theatre that will draw huge amounts of traffic. In light of the residents who have lost their lives, I find this proposal unconscionable in its current form.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 18, 2013 at 11:35 pm

Traffic is getting bad which I will be the first to admit. But all we to stop all progress, stop updating anything for traffic. Yes San Antonio Rd but the street is in dire need of upgrading. Some of the traffic deaths and injuries have been in residential areas.

Yes improvement are needed, we need to slow down.


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Posted by Solana
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 19, 2013 at 10:24 am

I worked close to this development for 2 years, and even before the redevelopment started, when Sears was still there, I had several close calls--near misses being almost run over while in a crosswalk, just walking to pick up a sandwich. I stopped going out for lunch. It was infuriating how little regard drivers have for pedestrians. I hope someone on the city council is reading this. You will have done a disservice to MV if this project puts pedestrian safety in second place.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 19, 2013 at 12:36 pm

@ Solana, I understand the near misses that you had and most likely others have had, fact of life is the some drivers are kind and don't know the rules. Some people who cross the street illegal don't get a free pass either. I use to live in this area back in the 80's, I didn't own a car, but I was a driver for a bakery.

Now why I told you this, I was one of those whole use to bike, walk and drive in the San Antonio area. Traffic was bad and other times it was normal for a shopping center, what made it worse was everyone seemed to be out all at the same time, but trust when I tell you this.
At certain times the traffic just went away, streets were easy to cross.


We need to make crossing the street safer for you and others, we need to make riding your bike on a nice safe friendly route. Drivers to be polite and friendly.


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Posted by Concerned Citizen
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 19, 2013 at 2:41 pm

There is NO parking agreement for Milk Pail Market in Phase II of the Redevelopment. When they tear down the Ross/BevMo where would you park while everything is under construction and then after the new buildings go up? Milk Pail Market would effectively be squeezed out/starved out if people stop being able to park there. Milk Pail Market has to meet City Parking Requirments. Got it? Two things you can do to make your voice heard
1. Sign the Greater San Antonio Community Association Petition (you don't have to live in Mountain View, just the greater community) Web Link
2. Go to the MV City Council Study Session TODAY, March 19th at 4:30 pm to discuss the redevelopment Web Link


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Posted by Mr. DePortum
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Mar 19, 2013 at 7:10 pm

What a bunch of Cry Babies, if you don't like it move out, it brings more job$ and housing to MV, poor people have no say in the matter.


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Posted by MV is for the 99%
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 19, 2013 at 11:51 pm

Putting the Milk Pail in a bigger space within the new development instead of leaving it where it is (on land owned by the owner of the Milk Pail) with consideration long term for parking for Milk Pail customers means to the current customers: 1. it loses it's original charm and character 2. in order to pay the exhorbitant rent it will be charged, the owner of the Milk Pail Market ceases to have the ability to offer the kind of food prices it now can to the community - we don't need or want a Whole Foods equivalent of the Milk Pail, we already have a Whole Foods down the street. This option really does NOT support small business.

Most people do not regularly go to the movies at the theater anymore. Movie theaters are hurting period. Most people I know go once or twice a year if it's a blockbuster film worth seeing on the big screen. Everything is moving to streaming. Video killed the radio star.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 20, 2013 at 9:17 am

Yes movie theaters ticket sales have dropped, yes costs of going to the movies are high, a coke is more then a gallon of gas.

I am one of those that still pay for a ticket, get a coke, M&M's and my popcorn. I take my seat in a darken room, enjoy my film. Afterwards I eat, drink and shop. I enjoy getting out of the house.

Side note here. When I go out to spend money, i deal with employees who sell me my tickets, soda, food, drink and what ever store i chose to enter. Property and sales will be generated and with a higher revenue stream from taxes and fees. The city can add, manage, build more city services and facilities for the resident.


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Posted by MV is for the 99%
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 20, 2013 at 4:34 pm

I shop weekly at the Milk Pail which also pays employees and also pays taxes and contributes to the city revenue. I would never trade a local treasure like the Milk Pail Market in lieu of yet another movie theater. Like most people I know, the 1-3x per year, I go to the theater to see a movie on the big screen (most recent was Life of Pi in 3D), I'll drive a few miles (or ride my bike via Stevens Creek Trail) to the Shoreline complex (or drive to the plethora of other local options). Though while enjoying my film, I will skip the overpriced junk food full of GMOs. Bottom line is which enhances my quality of life more as a resident? For me it's continuing to have a *reasonably priced* local produce/cheese/specialty store like Milk Pail. When people visit from other places, they often say they envy me 2 things (other than the weather) - the Sunday Mountain View Farmer's Market and the Milk Pail Market (which is like having the Farmer's Market available every day). I hate that a much loved, successful local business that's been around for almost 40 years is at risk in the name of profit (er, I mean "progress") Nevermind all the other issues that still need to be resolved for the community at large, regarding the new development (schools for all the new residents, parks, sidewalks, traffic nightmare, etc.)


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Posted by Herb Alba
a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 20, 2013 at 5:38 pm

I for one am glad this is going on. The buffoons on the City Council blocked a car wash on El Camino Real because they want it to be a great street like the Champs-Élysées.

Really? I don't recall the Champs-Élysées having an Adult Video Store, Psychic Dry Cleaners, nasty roach motels, and flavor of the week restaurants that go from Indian to Chinese to Thai as none of them last.

San Antonio Shopping Center will beautify this crummy part of Mountain View. Can't afford it? Move to San Jose.


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Posted by Distrurbed
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Mar 21, 2013 at 11:56 am

Nobody has yet made a connection to Agenda Twenty One, known locally as One Bay Area (or at least had a comment survive that mentioned it). Look it up. I'll be surprised if this comment survives very long.

I find it immensely disturbing that standing behind this complex, you can no longer view the mountains......from MOUNTAIN VIEW.

What the double-hockey sticks is going on with this, and all the other shoe-box housing developments all up and down El Camino that nobody wants to live in? Who the heck is Merlone Geier? And what is their Agenda?


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Posted by Hmmm
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 21, 2013 at 12:19 pm

ABAG. ABAG....What's ABAG?


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Posted by Traffic
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 21, 2013 at 12:27 pm

If you think traffic's bad now, or set to get worse when this thing completes, wait until they implement the dedicated VTA bus lanes. Yaye!

WAIT! WAIT! I KNOW! Let's just run high speed rail up and down El Camino!!! That'll solve everything! Then we can have 4,000 foot tall wall-to-wall vertical stacked housing the whole length of it! From San Francisco to LA!


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2013 at 3:44 pm

First we are talking shopping center which has been around since the 50's. At one time we did have the AMC theaters, there was,more shopping in this center, don't forget Old Mill and Mayfield Mall.

Has anyone seen the growth of certain businesses both retail and entertainment.

See Voice about Samsung and their project.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2013 at 3:44 pm

First we are talking shopping center which has been around since the 50's. At one time we did have the AMC theaters, there was,more shopping in this center, don't forget Old Mill and Mayfield Mall.

Has anyone seen the growth of certain businesses both retail and entertainment.

See Voice about Samsung and their project.


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Posted by sparty
a resident of Waverly Park
on Mar 22, 2013 at 12:01 am

"Most people do not regularly go to the movies at the theater anymore. Movie theaters are hurting period. Most people I know go once or twice a year if it's a blockbuster film worth seeing on the big screen. Everything is moving to streaming. Video killed the radio star."

That makes is bit hard to explain the jam packed parking lots outside the theaters in Santa Clara til 1am on weekends.


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Posted by sparty
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 22, 2013 at 12:07 am

If Milk Pail goes away, we need to replace it with a store that has equally oblivious customers who walk right in front of cars from in between the bushes that border the bevmo parking lot.
Otherwise a unique experience will be lost.


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2013 at 10:46 am

Crowd source the Milk Pail, even with construction. Why not call in your order, pay for delivery to your home or business. If you live in area, bike, walk or skate to Milk Pail.


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Posted by MV is for the 99%
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 23, 2013 at 7:09 pm

@Garrett - Maybe I should send my personal chef to shop there for me. That's not crowdsourcing. WebVan failed remember? Most people do not going to want to pay extra to have their groceries delivered. A lot of people (e.g. the foodies and home chefs that shop there) prefer picking out their own produce and groceries, and the community feeling of places like the Milk Pail, and the advertised and unadvertised specials and that's worth putting up with the narrow aisles when it's crowded (which it often is). All part of the fun and experience of going there.

@Sparty - Newsflash - pedestrians in California have the right of way in Cali, it's a state law to STOP for pedestrians in a cross walk - there is one at that crossing.

I'm beginning to think that Garrett is a shill for Merlone Geier or Carmel Partners and Sparty is just a troll, lol


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Posted by Maureen G
a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2013 at 7:59 pm

I have been a resident of Downtown Los Altos for 30 years. I work in Redwood City and because of the construction on San Antonio Road (both at El Camino and when you get on 101 North near Bayshore), I have changed my normal route to instead take Foothill Expressway to Page Mill and then Oregon Expressway to get to 101 North. The closed lanes, huge trucks, backups and delays have been intolerable and I can only imagine how much worse it is going to be when the San Antonio Center opens with all the new shops, residents and traffic. San Antonio Road cannot accommodate the traffic now - it is going to be even more painful in the future. I think the powers that be dropped the ball on this one, big time!


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Posted by Jasmine
a resident of another community
on Mar 23, 2013 at 8:59 pm

I urge x 100000 the city council not to build a movie theater in this area!! My family makes a weekly trip to the Milk Pail Market from SANTA CLARA because of the amazing quality of food and cheap prices they offer, along with their eccentric selections of cheese. Milk Pail Market is the best example of a community. I love the setting that the Milk Pail Market has set up in the area and yes, the presence of this market has brought business to Mountain View (which other than Castro, I have no reason to venture to). Please please PLEASE do not knock out an over-30-year-old business for some movie theater (one that I will never go to)!


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Posted by Concerned Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 24, 2013 at 8:26 am

It's really sad seeing the flurry of unplanned/uncoordinated development throughout Mountain View. This is not a "no development" vs "mass development" war. It's about how much and where. The precise plan would accomplish this. The city council seems asleep at the wheel. By the term is up there will be a total mess. They seem to be in the pockets of developers and seem to be unwilling to stand up. Recall City Council


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Posted by happy to shop at the milk pail
a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 24, 2013 at 11:30 am

sparty - grow some manners and get a life


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Posted by KirkLindstrom.com
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2013 at 12:02 pm

We ALREADY have gridlock trying to cross El Camino from parents on the Mountain View side dropping off and picking up kids from the schools. That extends to the gridlock during commute times for the same San Antonio - El Camino and vicinity. Now add more homes, a movie theater, etc.... Anyone notice Mtn View jams it all at the edge of town rather than in the middle where it would have to provide the schools and suffer the traffic, rather than Palo Alto and Los Alto residents who use San Antonio Road to get to their homes? What a terrible neighbor....


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Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2013 at 12:39 pm

First I don't expect, nor do I want the Milk Pail to leave, go out of business or forced out. If I was a developer which I am not, would want them to stay. Visitor and tenants would find this little market most inviting.

Second, I don't mind attracting new kinds of businesses, I remember years ago Macy's wanted to open a furniture store. Would have preferred Penney's to remain or we could get Cabela's sporting goods. Here is something indoor snowboarding and ski. This last they are looking, no kidding


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Posted by Bette
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2013 at 1:38 pm

I count on The Milk Pail to bring some joy. Nothing as good as finding the Fig Olive Brushetta for $.99 cents! There simply is no other place to go to get items such as Murcot tangerines for $.39 cents a pound or organic blueberries for $.99 cents. Although savings are negligible really because I have a long drive, it is well worth it for the experience. Most important to me is the sense of "right livliehood". It is very nice to be out of the corporate profit loop and have a place to get more real food that is not super market perfect sized. We need this model of a unique business.


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Posted by KM
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 24, 2013 at 1:42 pm

Though I think there is absolutely no need for a new movie theater in the area (let alone any more traffic) and have not seen a movie in a theater in at least half a year - neither have essentially all of my friends, though we are certainly not homebodies - I am not inherently against city development. I will say, however, that the Milk Pail is my single favorite shop in the entirety of the South Bay, intensely loved by all the circles I travel in, and it is crucial to keep it the way it is - with the prices it has. It is uniquely friendly, reasonably priced and excellently curated, an emblem of high quality merchandise and knowledgable staff without the snobbishness that so many similar places seem to entertain. It is this sort of establishment that makes the community special, and that makes me proud to live here. It is a fount of community spirit, and it is what drew me to the San Antonio Shopping Center upon moving here. I believe the same would be true for many future tenants. Should it be squeezed out or forced to raise its prices, Mountain View will have lost not only a true gem, but also the ideals of small business and good character that so many seem intent on dismantling.


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Posted by Nick
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2013 at 3:10 pm

The recent comments make it sound like the Milk Pail is being replaced by a movie theater. That's not the case. The Milk Pail's use of adjacent properties' parking is in question, but the future of the business itself lies in the hands of its owner(s).

San Antonio Center used to be a nice mall that you would linger in. Right now its just a collection of strip malls you get in and out of as fast as you can. I imagine its reconstruction with a nice collection of restaurants, shops, and a movie theater will only help more people discover the Milk Pail. I hope the developers truly realize what an asset the Milk Pail is and find ways to fold them into the shopping center's redevelopment rather than walling them off in a corner. Allowing Milk Pail customers to use the center's parking garages and providing good access between the two would be smart.

It's not the best example, but I think of how CJ Olsen's cherry stand in Sunnyvale was rebuilt when the orchard behind it was turned into a shopping center.


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Posted by MV is for the 99%
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 24, 2013 at 5:50 pm

@Nick - Not exactly true or what Merlone Geier has in mind... even thriving businesses with loyal customers FAIL when customers have no place to park (during construction or after), which is one way to force a business out for a piece of prime real estate. But Merlone-Geier would graciously offer to lease Milk Pail back prime retail space in the new development for an exhorbitant rent... is that what you mean by Milk Pail's fate being in the owner's hands? He's built a successful, much loved business on a little plot of land he owns over the last 39+ years. How and why? One reason of many is that he passes the savings on to his customers for quality, affordable food at a time when people should be eating far less processed food.

From a more recent MV Voice article written after last Tuesday's City Council Study Session about the San Antonio Development Web Link:

Milk Pail market threatened

Several residents spoke in favor of the Milk Pail market, which Merlone Geier wants to buy and demolish at the corner of California Street and San Antonio Road. The developer has said an agreement to share parking that the market has relied on to meet city requirements -- won't be renewed.

"It's absolutely one of the best things in Mountain View," said one resident of the quirky open air market. "It can't be squished out by big money."

Or can it be squished out? As it stands now, plenty of people who shop regularly at Milk Pail, live in MV or adjacent communities but not within walking distance. Milk Pail also attracts shoppers from all over the bay area to come to Mountain View. Parking is a necessity.

Along with all the other concerns people have regarding the new development, this is upsetting a lot of people who are NOT being listened to by the majority of City Council (600 signatures were collected in favor of a Precise Plan by the Greater San Antonio Community Association) *OR* the developer. A new movie theater in that location won't significantly improve the quality of life of most people in the area, Milk Pail does.

Since City Council voted down the Precise Plan, I believe they
will be making further approvals/decisions as they go along based on something called the General Plan. If you can't attend the meetings, you can still make your voice heard. Letters to City Council can be addressed to: citycouncil@mountainview.gov


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Posted by ZS
a resident of another community
on Mar 24, 2013 at 8:55 pm

Milk Pail is simply the only reason why I have been visiting the shopping square weekly for the past five years. I hope to continue my weekend shopping there in the future, if I could find a parking spot. I believe that Century 16 is already big enough for this community, and a new big theater is nothing but an unnecessary surplus.


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Posted by DC
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 24, 2013 at 9:46 pm

Milk Pail can move to the old Trader Joe spot in Sunnyvale.


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Posted by DC
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 24, 2013 at 9:53 pm

Just recall the last developer of the area wanted to put a Home Depot in because it would fit in the need of the area. Developers want to make money and High density = big profits (more rental space). Please control the one thing no one wants, the traffic jams.


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Posted by Andrew Wilkins
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 27, 2013 at 2:54 pm

What is going to happen to Savor Mexico and the sushi restaurant? They are both my favorite restaurants to go here in Mountain View. It would be a shame to see them demolished by those corporate bullies.


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Posted by MW
a resident of another community
on Apr 4, 2013 at 1:08 am

Honestly, all I want is Menu Tree back. That place was magical, retro and funky (in a good way).


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