On Dec 11, 2019, I attended a Public Hearing of the City Planning Commission regarding the proposal to build a 5-story hotel at 1000 Jacklin Rd, .3 miles from my home of 24 years.
Surely, I thought, this will be disapproved because there has not been a new tall building in this part of the city since Embassy Suites (1987). But I am not so sure now!
As I listened to the owner, developer, and their cadre of supporters, my heart sunk. I felt that I and the many residents who attended will lose the charm of our neighborhood, a single-family residential area with panoramic views of the hills, and with it, our contentment in the neighborhood.
The proponents were ready: they dangled the tax/fee dollars that the city will get from the hotel; their studies/surveys/analyses and subject matter experts said that traffic in the area will decrease, and safety and privacy will not be affected; crime in the area will not increase; parking is adequate; and hotel customers will not use street and residential parking.
I was shaking my head because it all controverts my experience as a long-time resident in the neighborhood, along with my plain common sense.
I, and many of the residents, do not have the deep pockets that the proponents do, and I am unwilling to spend my meager retirement savings to hire consultants and subject matter experts that may show different findings from theirs.
My sense of defeat sank even deeper when former elected officials and former city commissioners spoke in support of the project, and over how they glowingly enumerated the good qualities of the hotel applicant. I had not expected this. Surely of all residents, they would have argued to preserve the charm of Milpitas — a residential, family-friendly neighborhood.
The fate of the 5-story hotel is delayed until maybe the next hearing.
Perhaps it’s just the defeatism in me. To me: this is David against Goliath; common citizen vs former city officials; residents’ preference versus the allure of the almighty dollar. I think the outcome is very predictable.
Yes, Milpitas is growing up in more ways than one.
24-year Milpitas Resident