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Stanford to host public meetings on Sand Hill corridor projects

STANFORD -- Stanford University will host on Tuesday, Jan. 18 the first of three community meetings to discuss the university's proposals to widen and extend Sand Hill Road, expand the Stanford Shopping Center and construct "Stanford West," a multi-family and senior residential community on Sand Hill Road.

The meeting will be repeated Jan. 19 and Jan. 22. It begins the second phase of an extensive six-month community participation program launched in October by Stanford to share information with the community and gather public input on the projects.

Organized around the theme "Planning the Future of Sand Hill Road," the large public workshops will provide opportunities to discuss the projects and explore ways to improve preliminary plans, according to Andy Coe, Stanford's director of community relations. The workshops also will review the results of preliminary small group discussions held last fall with more than 250 Menlo Park and Palo Alto residents.

The Jan. 18 meeting will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Senior Center, 450 Bryant St., Palo Alto. The Wednesday, Jan. 19, session will be from to 7 to 9 p.m. at the Menlo Park City Council Chambers. The third workshop, also a repeat session, will be held at the Palo Alto Senior Center from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Jan. 22. Members of the public are invited to attend any one of the sessions.

Coe said the university is serious about sharing plans with the community, and eliciting ideas and comments.

"We listened to and recorded the comments and suggestions in the small group meetings and have collected a number of interesting ideas that will be discussed in this next phase of the process," Coe said. "We hope this process will assist us in developing projects that balance the needs of the university with those of the surrounding communities."

Palo Alto initiated the environmental impact report and public review processes for the Sand Hill corridor projects in 1992 when Stanford filed an application for the road widening and extension, and shopping center expansion. Separate applications covered the Stanford West multi-family and senior projects. It is expected that the applications will be modified in April at the conclusion of the community participation program.

The projects are intended to help meet the area's housing needs, ensure the long-term vitality of the Stanford Shopping Center and improve traffic circulation through the area.

Coe estimated that after completion of the initial community participation program, the formal public review process - including completion of the environmental impact reports and related government approval processes - would take about 18 months.

The January workshops will lay the groundwork, Coe said, for future working sessions with local residents over the next three months.

Information on the workshop sessions is available by calling Susan Mineta at (415) 926-0240.


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