MARIN COUNTY (KPIX 5) — Residents of the Marin County community of Inverness park are speaking out against plans by the co-founder of streaming music service Pandora to build a mega-mansion in their neighborhood.
“You drive up and suddenly see these great big trees, and the light sort of filters through right here, it’s so beautiful,” said Inverness Park resident Jennifer Thompson.
No doubt about it – the upper end of Balboa Avenue is absolutely beautiful. But a new home is being proposed at Lot 135.
“No one is opposed to a house being built here,” said resident Steve Martinek.
Neighbors, though, are concerned about the size of the proposed home. Seventeen bedrooms and 11 bathrooms in the main house, with three more bathrooms spread across a second living unit and a swimming pool.
“Those story poles outline the location of the pool house,” Martinek said.
It’s the dream vacation palace imagined by multi-millionare Tim Westergren, who co-founded the Pandora music service.
One by one, neighbors lined up to tell KPIX 5 they don’t have a problem with the music tycoon – just his home designs.
“If it was a reasonable-sized home, I don’t think you would hear any objection from people. It’s totally out of character with what exists on the hill so far,” Martinek said.
Thompson said, “It’s too big. It’s not only grand it’s grandiose.”
The neighbors are also wondering about the space required for an 8,000 square foot house.
“When you look at this view, and the story poles and how the house is sited, every Douglas Fir you can see is slated to be removed,” Martinek said.
To those concerns, Westergren said in a written statement, “Inverness is a special place and protecting the environment there is extremely important to me personally. I look forward to a collaborative and constructive dialogue with the community as I look to build a home for my family.”
“You’ll never explain to me why they need 14 bathrooms,” Thompson told KPIX 5.
The building notice in front of the lot is now covered by a friendly protest sign which reads “One or two bathrooms ok. No hotel. Live simply.” While no one would claim it as their handiwork, we didn’t see any neighbors rushing to take it down.
“I think that’s the general sentiment of most people who live here,” Martinek said.
Westergren and his wife bought the property in 2008. It used to be the site of a monastery.
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