MOUNTAIN VIEW (KPIX 5) — The City of Mountain View is divided over the future of some prime real estate in Google’s backyard. While some residents would like to see new housing for tech workers, others are worried about damaging the scenic landscape.
North Bayshore is serene, and Margaret Capriles is running for city council in order to preserve its natural beauty. “A place where all the residents of Mountain View can go out and relax and play and enjoy the area,” Capriles said.
But right next door to North Bayshore’s peaceful landscape, giant tech companies are fast expanding. Many tech workers rely on private shuttle buses for the long commute in.
Lenny Siegel, who is also running for city council, suggests taking the city’s plans for new office space, green space and building homes. As many as 5,000 homes could be built, allowing techies to live in walking distance to work.
“What Mountain View decides about housing in North Bayshore will affect not only Mountain View for a generation, but the entire Bay Area,” Siegel said.
For Siegel, it’s the high cost of housing in Mountain View that nudged him to run for office. “I’m personally concerned because my kids can’t afford to live here, but a lot of the people who work at Google are having a hard time managing to live here,” he said.
“More housing doesn’t always mean that’s going to solve the issue,” she said.
Capriles is in favor of new housing, but not in North Bayshore. “We have 2,500 units in the pipeline, of building houses in other places of city. Those are high-density, it’s next to transportation. So it’s smart growth, and to me that makes sense.”
Siegel said he is concerned that housing is not walking distance to North Bayshore tech companies.
Two candidates, two different opinions: But both agree housing in North Bayshore is what Mountain View is talking about.
“This is the issue which is going to decide our November election,” Siegel said.
As it stands now, the Mountain View Planning Commission recommends no housing in North Bayshore. But the November election could change that.