Nishi Campaign Response to Measure A Forum

Measure-A-forum(From Measure A Press Release) – On Wednesday evening, over forty Davisites attended the Davis Vanguard’s Measure A Debate at University Park Inn.

Supporting ‘Yes on Measure A’ was Tim Ruff, managing partner for the Nishi Gateway project, and Michael Corbett, former mayor and developer of The Village Homes, Davis’ leading example of sustainability. Alan Pryor, campaign treasurer, represented the No on A campaign.

Each campaign was asked questions generated by either the moderator, David Greenwald, publisher of the Davis Vanguard, the opposing campaign, or the audience, with a chance for each side to rebut. The primary topics discussed included traffic and housing, but the areas of sustainability and jobs were also touched upon.

One important question asked by the moderator was, “Absent the project, how do you solve for the City’s need for housing, jobs, and infrastructure on Richards Boulevard?” Pryor responded with “we don’t need more jobs…what we need is to adjust our housing jobs imbalance, and the only way we’re going to do that is by building more housing.”

The No on A campaign asserted that support for tech businesses and economic development is not needed in Davis. They also indicated that there is strong belief that the R & D space proposed at the Nishi Gateway Innovation District would not get built, which came as a surprise to Mike Hart, CEO of Sierra Energy, who was in the audience. Sierra Energy, with its headquarters in downtown and its research facility in South Davis, has recently joined the Nishi Gateway project with the expressed position of helping to develop the research park component.

Because the No on A campaign have never actually checked in with the tech community to ask them what they need, they don’t know that entrepreneurs like Hart have already invested many years and dollars into the community they live in and love.

Hart has spent the last 10 years building up his waste-to-energy tech company, based on technology presented at the UC Davis Big Bang! Competition, because he believes in the university and the power of its innovations. His passion for developing the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Davis is directly tied to a vision of accelerating the research and startups coming out of the university, and the 325,000 square feet of R&D space proposed at the Nishi Gateway.

Regarding how the improvements to the Richards Boulevard/Olive Drive/Interstate 80 intersection would otherwise be paid for, Pryor’s only response was to request more taxpayer funds from the City, State, and Federal programs with the hope that enough funds could be collected for the required improvements.

When ‘Yes on A’ representatives discussed the issues created by the lack of student housing, Pryor said the site cannot be used for housing due to air quality issues and that there are plenty of infill sites such as the Sterling Apartment site.

Later in the debate when Pryor was pressed on what suggestions the opposition had for providing solutions to the student housing crisis, he reversed his position and stated that the No on A position could support MORE housing on the Nishi site as long as it was “more affordable,” which seemed to indicate that air quality concerns are not really an issue.

At one point, Pryor demanded the project be brought back before the City Council for further review, even though the Council had recently approved the project unanimously and that all of the current candidates for City Council have unwaveringly endorsed a ‘Yes on Measure A’ vote for this June.

Pryor also passionately demanded that global warming needs to be taken seriously. But this strong statement by the No on A campaign contradicts the very sustainable solution of students living at the only site in Davis where studies show that 80% of residents will be expected to bike and walk to and from the university and downtown.

Mike Corbett, developer of a LEED platinum project being constructed in downtown, added that, “It appears that the No on A plan is to have everybody commute to Davis, increasing greenhouse gases, pollution, and traffic. This is the main cause of global warming. The No on A plan actually increases greenhouse gases for the region considerably when compared to our award winning sustainability plan at the Nishi Gateway project… and I should know a little something about sustainability!”

In response to Pryor’s statements concerning affordable housing, Council Member Robb Davis recently wrote, “the No on A (representatives) are free to say anything they want about the project. Unlike the City, they are not required to provide objective information and can willingly sow confusion, make vague accusations, and mislead. Evidence to date suggest they will do all of these.” This unanimous support by the City Council is reflected in recent public comments also made by Council Members (and candidates) Brett Lee and Lucas Frerichs, as well as Council Member Rochelle Swanson at the ‘Yes on A’ campaign kickoff event at the Natsoulas Gallery in downtown Davis.

The advocates for Measure A also pointed out that recent housing studies indicate that the primary cause of unaffordability in the State is due to the lack of housing supply and is contributed to by frivolous CEQA lawsuits. It was then noted by Ruff that the No on A campaign provides “no new housing alternatives for students or workers in their opposition and have indeed filed a CEQA challenge,” wasting time and resources on a project that has been supported through a thorough process with the City Council, City commissions, community groups, the university, regional planning agencies, and the tech sector.

In his closing remarks, Ruff utilized a poster illustrating a comparison of the outcomes for Davis if Measure A were to pass versus if it were not to pass. With a “Yes on A” vote, Ruff highlighted that:

* $23 million would be contributed to fixing traffic in Davis;

* 440 units of housing for 1500 students;

* $1 million donation to the affordable housing trust fund;

* 20 acres of open space parks would be available to the City’s residents; and

* 325,000 square feet of R&D space would be available for startups, with development led by a local tech company that has demonstrated success.

Should Measure A not pass, then each of these opportunities and amenities would be lost. “The facts are on our side in providing solutions to both the housing and traffic problems, the opposition is struggling to create reasons to oppose this project,” stated Ruff. “Multiple times during tonight’s debate, the No on A campaign failed to reconcile their frequently juxtaposed positions that provide no solutions for affordable housing, demands for sustainability, air quality concerns, and traffic improvements as a result of the 9,000 new commuters from the already announced university expansion.”

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118 Comments

  1. Michael Harrington

    Shameful that our “progressive” city is seeking to create a ghetto for young people in an area famous for  its toxic air.  Shameful.  And that Yes on A mailer had photos of families and babies playing in that murky soup, without one word about the location of the project ?  Lee and Davis, you should both be embarrassed for voting for this project.

      1. Roberta Millstein

        Breathing ultra-fine metals from braking cars on the freeway is not something you’d be aware of.  Not everything that can harm you is detectable by human senses.  That’s why we have things like carbon monoxide detectors.

        (and yes, I have visited the site.  It’s quite lovely, actually).

        1. ryankelly

          Roberta – It can’t be a “lovely” site and have poisonous, toxic air at the same time.  That the air at Nishi is so toxic that it can’t be developed is an absurd allegation.  That its proximity to the freeway means that mitigation to improve air quality for workers and residents could be done is more of an honest and accurate statement.  The plan calls for extensive green open space and the planting of an urban forest to address this issue.  To continue to call Nishi air a toxic soup that will kill people is just irresponsible and, frankly, reaching the level of stupidity.

        2. Ron

          ryankelly:  “That its proximity to the freeway means that mitigation to improve air quality for workers and residents could be done is more of an honest and accurate statement.”

          Well, that’s what the “Yes” side is stating, I suppose.  I’m not sure if it’s an “honest and accurate statement”, since there appears to be more than one professional opinion regarding this.

          Since most of us are not experts in this area, we’ll have to rely on the (conflicting?) opinions of professionals.  (Sort of like a courtroom, where different professional opinions are provided for laymen to sort out.)

          But, I disagree with one of your other points. Any given site can be scenic (“lovely”), yet still unhealthy.

        3. Roberta Millstein

          Ron said it exactly.  The site is scenic but unhealthy.  Appearances can be deceiving.

          As for the conflicting experts, I’ve yet to hear anyone counter Dr. Cahill’s evidence with anything but pure opinion.  I asked specifically about this at the debate, but the response from the “yes” side spoke only of mitigation, which Dr. Cahill has said would be insufficient.  The “yes” side did not say that it disagreed with Dr. Cahill’s findings.

        4. ryankelly

          Roberta,  Here is what Cahill wrote in his conclusions:

          “The farthest north reaches could support apartments if special efforts are made to over-pressure the apartment blocks with ultra-filtered air inputs and the like, supported by canopy vegetation throughout Nishi. However, it will take years before the vegetation can grow large enough to materially reduce the air pollution.”

          The apartments are located on the North side of the property and the plans include immediate planting of trees – an urban forest at the western tip and trees planted heavily along the freeway side as well as throughout the development.  The buildings will also have air filtration systems.  It will be 5 years before residential units will become available for occupation, so the trees will have time to mature.  Cahill had no problem with the development of R&D sites and even suggested a hotel.  So even he doesn’t think that the project site is undeveloped.   You and other No on A supporters have twisted this into Nishi being a site with toxic air without even considering the mitigation and efforts to improve the environment.

        5. Alan Miller

          Breathing ultra-fine metals from braking cars on the freeway is not something you’d be aware of.

          Do you support an immediate, emergency health evacuation of Olive Drive East?

        6. Roberta Millstein

          Alan Miller, as I wrote elsewhere on this page, according to Dr. Cahill Nishi is a particularly bad site, with a health threat 10 times worse than your average California freeway adjacent site.  That is because Nishi is:
          A.  Jammed between a heavily travelled freeway and heavily used train corridor, with most of the site within 500 feet of I-80 and all of it within 900 feet of the freeway.
          B. Downwind of a high traffic, truck-rich freeway with persistent heavy braking,
          C. Which is placed on an elevated berm directly upwind of the site, and
          D. Impacted by train diesel as they brake and accelerate going west from Davis

          He has elsewhere referred to this as a “perfect storm” of factors.  There may be impacts from Olive Drive, but it is not a “perfect storm.”

        7. DavisforNishiGateway

          Roberta,

          The experts who analysed the air quality impacts as part of the EIR offered their expert opinion in providing the mitigation impacts as part of the EIR. These are backed by copious data and meticulous analysis.

        8. Roberta Millstein

          DavisforNishiGateway person without a name:

          Which experts, other than Dr. Cahill, are you talking about?

          Here is what Dr. Cahill wrote, in a document that you can obtain upon request by emailing him:

          1.     I supported a research and innovation center with ultra filtration to protect the workers but with the absolute minimum of on site housing. I stated that if there were to be any very limited housing, it must follow a protocol…(Appendix A)..
           
          i.               Far away from the freeway.
           
          ii.              Establish the nature of the threats including > 1 yr of data,
           
          iii.            Independent review of the studies and the project
           
          iv.            Apartment proposal with pressurized ultra filtration,
           
          v.              Evaluate the effectiveness of mitigation efforts
           
          vi.            Publish the results in the peer reviewed literature the success, partial success, or failure of this effort.
           
                       I presented the information to the developer and Council in January, 2015, but items i, ii, and iii were not done. Since then there have been major changes that have greatly increased my concerns, as we are putting young unsuspecting young residents into serious risk:
           
           
           
          1.     The Nishi proposal was morphed into a village with thousands of residents, parks, retail, amenities, student housing, and apartments for both rent and sale.
           
          2.     Davis completed its Environmental Impact Report showing “…significant and unavoidable” (4.3-33) …” air quality impacts based on existing state and federal air quality regulations. This result was supported by measurements of diesel soot.
           
          3.     My analysis of the freeway impact has been completed, and the Nishi health threat is roughly 10 times the average California freeway. (see Atm. Env, April, 2016)

          New health data have become available including the almost doubling of the rate of having an autistic child if conceived with 1020 feet of a freeway.

           

        9. Roberta Millstein

          Dear DavisforNishiGateway person without a name,

          I can see that Ascent Environmental prepared the EIR.  Did they do their own independent research as well?  If so, can you please refer me to the pages of the FEIR where that research appears?  I am happy to take a look at it and be corrected, but it’s a long document, and you seem familiar with the “copious data and meticulous analysis.”

      2. Roberta Millstein

        ryankelly, can you tell me which document and page number you are quoting Dr. Cahill from?  I’m not doubting your quote, but I’d like to see the context of it.

    1. Matt Williams

      Merriam-Webster says . . .

      Definition of ghetto

      : a part of a city in which members of a particular group or race live usually in poor conditions

      : the poorest part of a city”

      Nishi is a lot of things, but it doesn’t fit the definition of ghetto.

      1. Michael Harrington

        Absolutely it does. And the ads to lease those apts to far away privileged kids of rich parents will be full of falsehoods like that union piece that arrived this week depicting six babies living on Nishi.  Disgusting.  What a shameful moment for Davis. Vote NO

    2. wdf1

      M.H.:  Shameful that our “progressive” city is seeking to create a ghetto for young people

      There are several interesting statements in the No campaign that tend to contradict and even discredit one another.  This one from Harrington is one of them.

      I’m now looking at the No on A advertisement on this page that says, “No to Unaffordable Housing.”

      I have a hard time understanding how “unaffordable housing” is a “ghetto for young people.”

    3. DavisforNishiGateway

      First the project is too expensive. Now it is a ghetto. I guess if you throw enough mud you can hope that something just might stick. First Alan Pryor says Tom Cahill “has a long history of completely contradicting himself from year to year on this issue [the safety of air quality in residential areas with respect to children] as well as his widely varying recommendations on wood smoke (probably because he is a self-admitted prolific wood burner) for years,” now the Mr. Pryor and the “No” side is holdhing him up as somehow trumping the meticulous work of the experts who completed the air quality report and recommended mitigation measures to reduce impacts to less than significant. Enough with the absurd contradictions. The “No” side is no longer interested in debating the facts because the facts don’t bear out their assertions.

  2. Robert Canning

    What nonsense, Mr. Harrington. Talk about shameful, it was only seven months ago that Alan Pryor posted the following about Dr. Cahill on the Vanguard:

    Alan Pryor
    November 24, 2015 at 4:26 pm

    This is the same Thomas Cahill who gave the thumbs up to the New Harmony project before Council and the Planning Commission years ago when local physicians questioned the wisdom of putting a low income housing project directly adjacent to the freeway citing evidence showing the adverse impact of freeway pollutants on children’s developing lungs. He said all you had to do was put in high efficiency filtration systems in all of the homes and plant cedar trees along the frontage. Well, Nishi is planning on putting in the same type of high efficiency particulate fillters in their proposed housing. It is hard to imagine he supported housing for long income children directly adjacent to the freeway but now opposes housing for adults that is actually further removed from the freeway. Unfortunately, Dr Cahill has a long history of completely contradicting himself from year to year on this issue as well as his widely varying recommendations on wood smoke (probably because he is a self-admitted prolific wood burner for years).

    What is shameful here is the disingenuous crap that No on A folks is spreading and purporting to call it scientific evidence.  We should be using science to further public policy, not distort public debate and make outrageous claims that is not supported by the science.

    1. Roberta Millstein

      Perhaps when Alan Pryor wrote that he did not yet understand Dr. Cahill’s finding that the Nishi health threat is roughly 10 times the average California freeway, due to the particular characteristics of the site.  Quoting from Dr. Cahill’s document, which he provided to me upon my request:

       
      Nishi is:
            A.  Jammed between a heavily travelled freeway and heavily used train corridor, with most of the site within 500 feet of I-80 and all of it within 900 feet of the freeway.
            B. Downwind of a high traffic, truck-rich freeway with persistent heavy braking,
            C. Which is placed on an elevated berm directly upwind of the site, and
            D. Impacted by train diesel as they brake and accelerate going west from Davis.

      The fact that Dr. Cahill would support one project and not another lends him credibility, in my view.  He is evaluating each site independently and is not making a blanket rejection of all housing sited near a freeway.

        1. Roberta Millstein

          See my comment below.  He is against using the site for housing sensitive groups, like seniors, children, pregnant women.  I did not hear him advocate for its use for low-income housing, but rather, for student housing.  In this, Pryor diverges from Cahill, who is against using the site for housing at all.

      1. ryankelly

        Here is what Cahill wrote about Nishi:

        The farthest north reaches could support apartments if special efforts are made to over-pressure the apartment blocks with ultra-filtered air inputs and the like, supported by canopy vegetation throughout Nishi. However, it will take years before the vegetation can grow large enough to materially reduce the air pollution.”

        Read the plans for Nishi and see that the designs have responded to these suggestions.

        1. Roberta Millstein

          ryankelly, can you tell me which document and page number you are quoting Dr. Cahill from?  I’m not doubting your quote, but I’d like to see the context of it.

        2. ryankelly

          Roberta, Cahill testified at the Planning Commission meeting on October 14, 2015 and submitted a written letter detailing his concerns.  This was where the quote was from, it appears. I can see evidence of the meetiagenda, but no minutes are posted. The website only has the video of the meeting posted for 3 months.

        3. Roberta Millstein

          ryankelly, on p. 2-81 of the FEIR, there is a document that appears to be from Dr. Cahill’s visit to the Planning Commission on October 16, 2015.  At the top of the document, the following statement appears in bold:

          “My recommendation: If the Planning Commission should decide to support the Nishi proposal, the threats from air-pollution (diesel and ultra-fine metals) are so grave that it should be modified to eliminate all residential housing.”

          The quote you mention does appear at the bottom of p. 2-82.  But in the very next sentence, Dr. Cahill goes on to urge that the situation might (and ideally should) be improved if California makes effective efforts to remove the toxics from brake drums and pads, and that it should be verified by ultra-fine compositional on-site testing, especially in winter inversions.

          And then there is another paragraph in bold:

          “However, in present conditions, it is my opinion that causing people, and especially vulnerable populations spending much of their time on the Nishi property, to movie into a situation of such great potential harm is simpl[y] not supportable.”

          So, the very qualified statement that David quoted and that you quote in turn is flanked by two very definitive statements in bold.  I’d say that Dr. Cahill’s view is that there should not be any housing on the site, and the fact that he is now taking out “ads” in the Enterprise to make that case supports that interpretation.  I believe that he thinks that since then new evidence has come to light concerning the potential for increasing the chances of autism in newborn children at the site, and this has increased his concern for having housing there.

      2. Rob White

        It is amazing that Dr. Cahill has such certainty about his views without any actually air monitoring. And what can’t be accounted for is how the new trees and building forms will change the air dispersion model.

        But even more interesting is that the No on A posters say “No to Unaffordable Housing” but then Alan Pryor advocates for only student housing, which by definition (and regulation) is exempt from the affordable criteria. So which is it? The No campaign wants affordable housing at Nishi, or they don’t (because affordable housing most certainly will include these sensitive populations that are being complained about)?

        1. Roberta Millstein

          Rob White, you are mistaken.  He has monitored the site.  If you email him, he will send you the information.  They are also publicly available in the Nishi FEIR.

      3. Tia Will

        Roberta Millstein

        I do not doubt the sincerity of Dr. Cahill. It is the sincerity of Alan Pryor that I would question. He seems to believe in Dr. Cahill’s recommendations when it suits his purposes and ignores or dismisses Dr. Cahill’s findings when they do not suit his purposes.

        This is not the first time that Alan Pryor has used this tactic. During the debate over fluoride, Alan Pryor argued that he wanted for all sides to be heard. On a technicality due to a listing error on a schedule presented to the City Council, he challenged me and would not let me present highly relevant information. After the final City Council vote, he told me in person that he knew that much of the data and studies presented by the opposition to fluoride was either invalid or misleading, but that he did not challenge it because they supported his position. Regardless of one’s position on fluoride or air pollution, either lying yourself, or allowing untruths to stand unchallenged is completely unacceptable. While I have not seen Alan Pryor actively lie, I know him to be willing, in his own words, to allow erroneous statements to stand as the truth if it suits him.

        1. Roberta Millstein

          For the record, my own position on what should be done is closer to Cahill’s than Pryor’s.  But one of the reasons I went to the event was to try to get a better understanding of Pryor’s views with respect to the air quality issues.  I thought that I did, but others say that his views are other than how I have portrayed them.  *shrug*  I’m not going to get overly fussed about it.  It’s Dr. Cahill who has done the research.

    2. Alan Pryor

      As I have since reported:

      “…my opinion has changed. I read a whole lot more about the adverse impacts of freeway pollution and actually did some computer dispersion modeling using EPA software like I did years ago with wood smoke. New Harmony and Nishi are completely different in terms of their topography and the direction of prevailing winds relative to the freeway and railroad tracks . Nishi is downwind from prevailing winds and sits down in a “bowl” allowing pollutants to downdraft and settle in the low-lying areas particularly during winter months with inversions – just as Dr. Cahill stated.”

        1. tj

          Cancer is not the primary problem with the contaminated air.  Asthma and other health impacts are the problem.   The argument about low cancer rates is an attempt to hide the ball.

      1. Frankly

        Or maybe you don’t really believe that there are dangerous air quality issues but have gotten tangled up in your positions and now are stuck having to defend them.

      2. Robert Canning

        Alan, I would like to see the references for the health impacts you believe are present at Nishi.  As you know, I believe interpreting the findings of the the small, correlational studies Dr. Cahill cites are way over board and is a bad use of scientific findings.  One or two studies does not a fact make.

  3. Michelle Millet

    When ‘Yes on A’ representatives discussed the issues created by the lack of student housing, Pryor said the site cannot be used for housing due to air quality issues…

    Later in the debate when Pryor was pressed on what suggestions the opposition had for providing solutions to the student housing crisis, he reversed his position and stated that the No on A position could support MORE housing on the Nishi site as long as it was “more affordable,” which seemed to indicate that air quality concerns are not really an issue.

    Sigh.

    1. Roberta Millstein

      In fact, Pryor did not contradict himself.  He stated very clearly that while some (like Dr. Cahill) are against using the site for housing at all, he himself objects to the site being used for housing for particularly sensitive groups, like seniors, children, and pregnant women.  Pryor said that he would be OK with the site being used for housing (presumably young, healthy) students alone, while acknowledging that others would disagree with him on that point.  You can agree with him or disagree with him, but he did not contradict himself, and again, stated this all very clearly.  Saying that he did is just a smear tactic.

      1. Michelle Millet

        In a response to a question regarding the lack of students housing…

        Pryor said the site cannot be used for housing due to air quality issues and that there are plenty of infill sites such as the Sterling Apartment site.

        From this comment it seems like he is opposed to housing on the site for students.

        Then he goes on to say he would support the project if it included more affordable housing?

        Pointing out when someone contradicts themselves is not a smear tactic.

        1. Roberta Millstein

          Again, I think that is a misrepresentation of what he said.  That is not a quote; that is what whoever wrote this piece claims that he said.  He is not against housing at the site altogether; he thinks it should be for student housing alone, but not used for housing for sensitive groups.

        2. Michelle Millet

          The current plan is to design the housing for students. So I’m having a hard time understanding why, if Alan thinks it’s okay to have student living there, he is using air quality as a reason to oppose the project, while at the same time arguing for more housing.

        3. nameless

          To Roberta Milstein: YOU are misrepresenting Alan Pryor’s position – he has clearly advocated for more affordable housing on the Nishi site, at the same time he doesn’t want housing on site for seniors, pregnant women and young children.  Problem is that it is highly likely any affordable housing at the Nishi site would be for low income folks who are seniors or pregnant women and/or children.  That makes his statements internally inconsistent.

        4. The Pugilist

          Nameless: I think what we are seeing is that the kitchen sink approach of the No side has left them making inherently contradictory arguments.

        5. The Pugilist

          “Problem is that it is highly likely any affordable housing at the Nishi site would be for low income folks who are seniors or pregnant women and/or children.  That makes his statements internally inconsistent.”

          This is exactly right.  The more the No folks repeat this stuff, the more their arguments start falling apart.

  4. Roberta Millstein

    Here is what I saw at the debate – the pro-Measure A side spent their entire “opening statement” talking about traffic improvements.  Traffic improvements are the carrot they are dangling in front of a population weary of sitting in traffic on Richards.  But surely, that should not be the main benefit of the project?  It felt very disingenuous to me, and of course, others have challenged whether our traffic will really improve.

    I also noticed that Ruff and Corbett often did not answer questions asked, and spent much of their time attacking Pryor, talking while he was talking (which Greenwald seemed to allow for some reason).  This is what people do when they have no argument – they make personal attacks on the other side. They did not behave professionally.

    I find it amusing to read this very one-sided characterization of what happened on Wednesday.  I barely recognize the event.

    1. nameless

      The problem with your assessment are the actual words used by the No on A side, which are contradictory and offer no reasonable solutions to the city’s problems.

        1. Roberta Millstein

          Nameless: the above article was not written by the Vanguard.  It is a piece written by the “yes” side.  And taking someone’s words out of context is the same as misrepresenting them.

        2. Rob White

          Roberta

          I was there, and these words were not taken out of context. Alan Pryor is an intelligent, well-spoken individual and when he says something, I believe he means what he says. These comments were made by him (though I will concede they are not word for word), the intent was easy to understand and the message was not complicated, so I don’t think we should question his intent nor the meaning other than what is obviously represented.

    2. Ron

      Roberta Millstein:  “I find it amusing to read this very one-sided characterization of what happened on Wednesday.  I barely recognize the event.”

      The first sentence of this article states “From Measure A Press Release”.  I’m not sure what this means, but it appears that this is simply a one-sided narrative (from the “Yes on Measure A” campaign?) regarding the event.  (I hope that it’s not intended to be an accurate representation of the event, or more importantly – the issue.  If so, the Vanguard has some serious credibility/objectivity concerns.) Either way, the author/source of this narrative should be identified.

        1. Ron

          Michelle:  “The source is identified, in the first sentence. I’m not sure how the Vanguard could have stated it more clearly.”

          It says “From Measure A Press Release”.  I wasn’t sure how to interpret this. (It would be more clear if the Vanguard identified the article as consisting of a press release generated by the “Yes on Measure A” campaign.)

        2. Michelle Millet

          I’m going to have to disagree with you on this one Ron. “From Measure A Press Release” seems pretty clear. I’m not sure how that could be misinterpreted by anyone. (And trust me, I’m the first one to give David a hard time about this kind of stuff:-).

    3. The Pugilist

      I wasn’t at the debate, but it seems like opening with the traffic improvements is meant to counter arguments from the no side on the traffic impacts.  That makes sense to me.

      But you note, it’s one-sided, well it’s a press release from the Yes campaign, what do you expect?  Alan or you are free to send a response to the Vanguard.  I’d like to read it.

      1. Roberta Millstein

        I have sent an op-ed to the Vanguard.  I am not sure if David is going to run it.  However, I don’t think my notes are sufficient to give an objective and thorough reporting of what happened on Wednesday.

    4. DavisforNishiGateway

      Nishi delivers up to $1.4 million annually to fund city services, $400k annually for DJUSD, creates R&D space and 1500 jobs (although apparently Mr. Pryor and the “No” side seem to think Davis doesn’t need jobs), builds desperately needed-student housing (which Mr. Pryor now claims he supports despite his past opposition. We’ll see whether he changes his mind again tomorrow–or on their next mailer), it helps fund Davis libraries, Los Rios Community College, and the Yolo County Office of Education, and, yes, it invests $23 million in infrastructure upgrades for Davis–including the creation of a new undercrossing to access campus. The traffic improvements are part of a long list of benefits this project creates if approved.

  5. Odin

    Can someone please prove to me how you can possibly estimate 80% of students will walk or bicycle?  I live on Olive, not so far away from Nishi, and every morning I see students in their cars leaving all the apartment complexes heading for campus.  Sure many ride their bikes, but not 80%!

    1. nameless

      Come to West Davis, where you can see all the students every morning biking to campus at the intersection of Russell and Sycamore.  All three of my kids biked or rode Unitrans to campus, they did not drive.  Parking on campus is extremely expensive, so most students bike or take Unitrans.

        1. Frankly

          Thanks Don.  This is really interesting.

          Assuming 1,000 new UCD people (students and employees) every year, that would be 660 more bikes and pedestrians, 100-120 more cars, and 5-10 additional buses.

          Think about a decade of this type of growth.

          I think the No people are just not understanding that THIS is the source of greater traffic and more people.  Nishi is attempting to accommodate some of this growth.

    2. South of Davis

      Odin wrote:

      > Sure many ride their bikes, but not 80%!

      I bet that MORE than 80% of the students on Olive ride their bikes or walk.

      I have been to the apartments on Olive on school days and have NEVER seen more than 10% of the parking spaces empty.

      Nishi will be even closer to campus so should have even more students walk or ride.

    3. wdf1

      Odin:   I live on Olive, not so far away from Nishi, and every morning I see students in their cars leaving all the apartment complexes heading for campus.

      Really?  On clear days the only reason it makes sense to drive to campus is coming from out of town.  It can actually take longer (and cost more, especially on a student budget) to drive from most Davis homes, park in a student lot, then walk to class than it would take to ride a bicycle from a Davis home to the building where the class is being held.  Driving to campus from Olive Dr. seems even more ridiculous.

      1. Odin

        Well, unless all those cars with UCD tags hanging off their mirrors are heading somewhere else, then I have no idea where they are going.  Also, for someone to say they drove into a parking lot a couple of times to make an observation is NOT indicative of what is really going on.  I think you’ll find a lot of people on Olive who agree with my observations.

        1. DavisforNishiGateway

          Anecdotal evidence is not sufficient to argue against professionally aggregated and analysed data. The traffic survey from UC Davis is the result of a comprehensive and detailed approach to try and understand who is coming to Davis and how they are getting there.

  6. nameless

    The No on A campaign asserted that support for tech businesses and economic development is not needed in Davis.

    I would say this pretty much sums up No on A’s position – no growth, with no viable solutions to the city’s problems.

    1. South of Davis

      I would say this pretty much sums up No on A’s position – “No new rental housing in Davis so we can get top dollar for our dumpy old rentals and/or make extra cash renting rooms to students” (no one wants to live with an aging boomer cat lady that never stops talking about 60’s protests unless they have no other housing choices in town)…

  7. Frankly

    I’m sorry I missed this.   I’m not surprised that Mr. Prior and the No crowd got embarrassed contradicting themselves.  That is what tends to happen over time when the arguments are fake and manufactured to mask what is really just an irrational tantrum of immovable opposition.

    I love too when they get backed into a corner unable to make an informed argument to support their position.  Then we get statements like “Davis does not need tech business, nor economic development.”   Just pull that stuff out of their _ _ _.

    Ironic isn’t it that this type of desperation opinion is typed on a marvelous machine that was invented and produced by tech business with support from economic development?

    I love to debate with reasonable people having opposing points in rational arguments.  I also love to debate unreasonable and irrational people to demonstrate to others their unreasonableness and irrational-ness.   The No on Measure A crowd is mostly the latter.

    1. nameless

      Frankly: “I’m not surprised that Mr. Prior and the No crowd got embarrassed contradicting themselves.  That is what tends to happen over time when the arguments are fake and manufactured to mask what is really just an irrational tantrum of immovable opposition.

      I am going to posit another theory, which I assume the “No” on Measure A folks will vehemently deny, but it is my belief.  My guess is that they oppose Nishi because of a strongly held and sincere belief growth is bad for the environment, reasoning that probably would not stand up to scrutiny.  Many of them belong to the Sierra Club, and are the usual suspects in almost every opposition campaign involving housing or economic development in Davis.  That said, I do believe we have to separate out Mr. Harrington from the group, as a unique character in opposition to growth for his own narrow reasons…

      1. Frankly

        Yes, standing on a mountain top peering over the valley, I had this thought that the natural world would be so much better experienced without people.

        1. Tia Will

          It has nothing to do with the impact on the environment. They simply do not want any more of ‘those people’ coming to live here.”

          Another acolyte of Frankly’s mind reading group. So nice to know that you can see into the hearts and minds of others.

      2. Michael Harrington

        Nameless:  I’m always singled out. It comes with leadership territory.  We filed the final brief today in the challenge to the Embassy Suites projects lack of a full EIR.  Trial is June 16, Woodland.

    2. Odin

      Seriously???  There is something wrong with US and not you Frankly??  You’ve got an opinion, THAT’S ALL IT IS OR EVER WAS, so don’t even try to take the high road in a town of well educated people who make their same opinions based on all the evidence presented to us.  Cities all over the states have been deceived by developers stating what they will do, then doing something completely different.  All I read in the voter guide are terms like “will attempt to achieve”  and “will strive for” and you’re telling us we have to take every word they say as if it’s the word of God….ugh, getting tired of even posting up on these forums anymore.  All the Yes people do is belittle the rest of us by calling us terms like “unreasonable” or “irrational”.  Thank for continuing the discourse of this discussion.

      1. DavisforNishiGateway

        Odin, I suggest you take a look at the project baseline features and the developer agreement if you are so confused about what this project will deliver and are unwilling to trust the information you receive from the campaign. Also, the draft EIR and final EIR are good places to understand the specific mitigation measures as well.

        1. nameless

          I care about the truth and I care about this city, and I am in favor of Measure A, because it will bring much needed student housing to the city, much needed tax revenue, traffic improvements, new jobs and R&D space.

      2. Frankly

        Odin, there is plenty wrong we me.  I am as imperfect as the next guy.  But like I said, I am more than happy to support a No position if that position is based on facts and comes with some attempt to offer alternative solutions.  It is impossible for me to respectful of those that throw out stuff in opposition just to see if they can get it to stick to the wall.

        Frankly (because I am) I think you are all worked up about this changes given that they are in close proximity to where you live; but the impacts will be much less negative than you are imagining… and in fact, I think they will actually improve your quality of life.

        1. Tia Will

          Frankly

          but the impacts will be much less negative than you are imagining… and in fact, I think they will actually improve your quality of life.”

          In fairness to Odin, you said essentially the same thing to me about 3-4 years ago about “increased population growth” and “increased business growth” and “vibrancy” in Davis. Your were wrong. My life has not been enhanced by the increased traffic, the nightclub scene in downtown Davis before the change enacted after the Ket Mo Ree tragedy , the increased number of students or the increase in restaurants and other businesses that cater to the student population. My quality of life hasn’t changed much over time. I don’t think that it is possible for you, living your chosen bedroom community style life and so unaffected by these projects to predict what those that are living more centrally may or may not benefit from. But that never seems to stop your from speculating that what your prefer will make others happier too.

        2. Frankly

          In fairness to Odin, you said essentially the same thing to me about 3-4 years ago about “increased population growth” and “increased business growth” and “vibrancy” in Davis.

          Because none of what I was advocating has transpired.  Nothing has been built.  You are only complaining about the organic changes (basically UCD growth) happening in your no-change world.   You are in fact validating and proving my point… that the failure to develop will cause a degradation in all of our quality of life.

          Tia – you can go through life being the victim of things happening to you as you pull the covers over your head, or you can work to change the world in ways that give you a sense of improvement.

  8. skeptical

    tj

    Many of these Measure A proponents actually believe what they are posting.  They are just upset because they recognize they have lost the argument.  The first sign of a losing argument is attacking a messenger (check).  The second is when they attack the opposing message rather than strengthening their own (check).

    These posts are not a genuine effort to understand or elevate the conversation.  They are merely an outlet for their frustration.

    1. Frankly

      Ha!  Nice spin retort.  Now I am REALLY frustrated!!!!   LOL.

      Here is the actually story.

      The No people are trying to take the moral high ground (dangerous pollution, gridlock, unaffordable housing, city gifts to developer over the needs of the poor, developer getting rich of the backs of poor Davisites), but they are being called out for these lies and hence being unmasked as standard no-change NIMBYs.

      And the Yes people are left with the true higher moral position of supporting Nishi because it improves the overall human condition.

      I see the frustration as 100% with the No people.

      1. Michael Harrington

        thank you my dear neighbor Frankly for nicely summarizing some of the NO arguments.

        Gonna be a wild ride in the ‘hood for the next few weeks.

        We have the facts and the moral high ground, but the Yes side is brilliantly sending out fliers showing babies playing between the smoggy RR tracks and the jammed freeways.  So could be close

  9. Alan Miller

    he reversed his position and stated that the No on A position could support MORE housing on the Nishi site as long as it was “more affordable,” which seemed to indicate that air quality concerns are not really an issue.

    Not for housing the government subsidizes for low income people.  Apparently.

  10. Marina Kalugin

    is Cunningham the Engineer on THIS project also?   no time to look it up, but MOST of the big projects in town over decades was this good ole boy….

    for a sample of the work, walk the sidewalks of Woodbridge….   when I get a moment I WILL and i WILL post pictures….

  11. Marina Kalugin

    any PROPER soil engineer would know that the farmland that Davis is built on is expansive soil…

    If one cuts corners and does NOT take proper, and MORE expensive measures, one gets Woodbridge and most other more recent SLAB developments…

    Back in the days of the better guys, with Streng and the ones who are ALL up and down east davis… Woodland, Vacaville….you know ….cannot place the name…..RAISED foundations are much more forgiving on expansive soils….and also are WAY better for the termite situation which is prevalent throughout town…. but the cost is sky high….

    If done right, like in Sacramento, the sidewalks last for eons….

    PS>   Alan, are you saying that DAvis does not already have ENOUGH low income apartments and such…..or rather that the ones that are being built here are overpriced?  And not affordable?

    Marina Kalugin (Rumiansev)….

  12. Marina Kalugin

    so I was told I was a NIMBY when I stood up against the Ricci Farm destruction…..even though THAT was in the General Plan as Farm/Open Space and when I purchased my house I DID my due diligence……within years the local guys, lemme see  Cunningham, and several others who are STILL around were greasing the wheels of the good ole BOYS on the city councill…many of the custom home builders, like Fouts, who built the THREE story single story home behind MY HOUSE>>>blocking any light and sun which was CONDEMNED due to Toxic mold… see other posts on other threads….

    and I have NO idea where he managed to find the 1/8 inch thick fencing which was less than 2 inches wide which was STAPLED to the posts…and fell in the first wind….

    Back then THOSE were the MOST expensive houses being built in Davis…..and now HE got the go ahead for GRANDE…….(please correct me if I am wrong on THAT)….I am pretty sure I noticed that in an article somewhere….

    Just because you take a pig and put makeup on it it is STILL a hog… OINK OINK

    1. Frankly

      I don’t mean to offend here because I like to read what you write, but the use of caps comes off a bit like Turrets Syndrome.  (CAPS convey SHOUTING).  If you have this then please forgive my lack of sensitivity.

  13. Marina Kalugin

    FRankly….I don’t have time to hustle and since I have been at my desk since 5 am…and have not even had lunch yet….. I miss the keys sometimes on the caps and I do this for emphasis also..

    You have not seen me shouting yet…be thankful.

    And, as some who TRULY understands what tourette’s is, one should be a bit more kind…

    Someone dear to me has a mild form….and it is NOT a joking matter…said for emphasis.

    If the same developes and engineers are involved in Nishi it is NOT off topic…emphasis on purpose.

    Finally, and Frankly,   most of you guys are way too young to know who I am and what I have been involved in in this town….I may not know the latest players as I have little time to keep up.

    And, I often am inappropriate on purpose to the dismay of my family, friends, Chair, Deans, and others who I regularly challenge….on all the idiotic stuff THEY do…

    Since I started posting my ResearchGate account has more than 50 new hits a day…..

    And, I am recieving phone calls and emails from people who are afraid to speak up and who no longer post on the DV…..

    Have a good evening….. my husband said I turn into a werewolf when the sun goes down…  LOL

     

    1. Frankly

      Hey – if you are inappropriate on purpuse to the dismay of your family and friends, you and I might be in the same club!

      Please keep posting even if you need to SHOUT every few words.

    2. hpierce

      You’re right Marina… I’m a “newbie”… only alive for 3 score + years, Davis resident for 2 score + years… your opinion is obviously better than mine… but I will not concede false “facts”… ‘newbie’ privilege…

  14. Marina Kalugin

    PS>   all of this Nishi business is to truly hide what is rEALLY happening.

    There is a lot of truly critical dirt being hidden right now by the DV..

     

    1. hpierce

      So, what is “rEALLY happening”?  What is the “truly critical dirt being hidden”?  Using a poker term, “I call, show your hand or fold”…

  15. Eileen Samitz

    I just got a chance today to check in on what has been gong on on the Vanguard and the first thing that got my attention regarding this article is, who wrote it?  Why does it say “Measure A press release” which can mean that the Vanguard wrote it? Why is the authorship not clearly identified? Since I am familiar with the issue, I suspect that the “Yes on Measure A” campaign wrote this “press release”.

    Furthermore, if it is a “press release” from the Yes on A  group, why wouldn’t the Vanguard notify the No on A group to have both opinions post their articles, to have each sides account of what they saw happen at the Vanguard forum, publlished at the same time, rather than this free advertisement for the “Yes on Measure A” campaign? Although I may not always agree with the Davis Enterprise’s “Our View” opinions or how they cover some issues, at least they make an attempt to balance the forum opinion information.

    A strong suggestion to the Vanguard is that if you want to be viewed as being fair  to any extent,  you really need to identify who is writing these opinion pieces because readers can easily mistaken this piece to have been written by the Vanguard. This should be corrected at this late time on the web if possible.  Can you at least clearly identify that this from the “Yes on A  campaign”  hired public relations group so everyone knows that this is an opinion piece from them.

    Also, you really should really charge the “Yes on Measure A” campaign for this space that they used to advocate by presenting what they want the public to believe about the Nishi project in this long advertisement presented as an “article”.  Since the “Yes on Measure A ” is very well funded by the developers, they can afford it, so in all fairness, they should pay the Vanguard for this large ad.  But it needs to be identified clearly to the readers as an ad for the “Yes” campaign, not a nebulous “Measure A press release”.   I mean come on Vanguard, you really should know better than this.

    But most importantly now and in the future Vanguard, let’s have some clarity and disclosure on where these “Yes on Measure A” articles are really coming from, which is a well paid public relations firm handling all of this media stuff for the “Yes on Measure A” campaign.

     

     

  16. Eileen Samitz

    ryankelly,

    I have no problem with the “Yes on Measure A” campaign releasing a “press release'” in the Vanguard or elsewhere. I do, however, have an issue with them not clearly identifying that they are the authors of the “press release” advocating their opinion. What was posted was an article that appeared to be the Vanguard’s report of what happened at the forum. When in fact it was total “spin” by the Yes on Measure A campaign of what they wanted readers to think happened.

    The article with all the pro-Measure A “spin” in it apparently written by the highly paid public relations firm for “Yes on Measure A” was not identified as being authored by them, rather than the Vanguard.  The really misleading info posted by the Vanguard was that it was a “Measure A Press Release”.  What does that mean? Who wrote it ? Because that IS important given the Yes on Measure A “spin” information that was written in it, in such a way to make it sound like this was the “take home” overall coverage of the forum, when it was just and only the “take home” info that the Yes on Measure A” folks wanted folks to believe.

    But what I can tell you is that after the forum,  attendees took home “No on Measure A” lawn signs, but no one took  any “Yes on Measure A” signs. Plus, two apparently hired students with their clipboards for the “Yes on Measure A” campaign were desperately trying to lobby one student-aged young man.

    The bottom line is that anytime the Vanguard is publishing any press releases from the Yes on Measure A ” campaign they need to clearly identify that in authorship. Likewise with the “No on Measure A” campaign so we know who the authors are.  Local commercial real estate broker Jim Grey also wrote his spin regarding the forum for the “Yes on Measure A”. How “coincidental” that the two articles had the same, pro-Yes “spin”. But it is not hard to understand why Jim Grey is such a strong advocate of the Nishi project since he is a local commercial real estate broker and former partner of one of the Nishi developers.

    So in the future Vanguard, please just clearly identify what articles are being released by either the Yes or No on Measure A campaigns who we know who these articles are being authored by, or if they are being written by the Vanguard, particularly in events like the coverage of any forums on ballot issues.

    1. David Greenwald

      That’s what we did – it stated at the top of the article that it was a Measure A Press Release. Had it been ours, there would have been a name at the top or my name at the bottom.

  17. Eileen Samitz

    David,

    My point is make it clear that it was from the “Yes on Measure A” campaign, and not the nebulous “Measure A Press release” which does not make it clear that this was an opinion piece from the “Yes on Measure A” campaign, rather than coverage from the Vanguard. This may be obvious to you, but it is NOT obvious to all readers and I have had this same complaint from others on this article.

  18. Ron

    David:  “That’s what we did – it stated at the top of the article that it was a Measure A Press Release. Had it been ours, there would have been a name at the top or my name at the bottom.”

    I also was (initially/monetarily) confused, regarding the “nebulous” name (as Eileen describes it).

    Also, it seems to me that your name does NOT appear on articles authored by the “Vanguard Administrator” (assuming that’s you).  (Perhaps I’m recalling this incorrectly?)

      1. Ron

        David:  “That’s correct, my name only appears on those I have authored.”

        Just curious – who authors articles attributed to “Vanguard Administrator” (only), with no other name?  (Assuming that I’m recalling this, correctly.)

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