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OP-ED: San Carlos: A great place to live ... for people of all ages
June 27, 2014, 05:00 AM By Alisande Rozynko

Alisande Rozynko

North Crestview Park is a unique park at the top of San Carlos with spectacular views of the entire San Francisco Bay all the way to Mount Diablo. It has been used and enjoyed by neighborhood residents of all ages for 40 years.

San Carlos is a mixed generation community and North Crestview Park is enjoyed by young families, single people and elderly couples alike. After all, only 33 percent of households in San Carlos have children under 18, while 35 percent of the families in San Carlos have members that are over 60 [See http://suburbanstats.org/population/california/how-many-people-live-in-san-carlos]. Residents of all ages make San Carlos a great place to live. North Crestview Park attracts people to the neighborhood and makes it a better place to live. It also makes the neighborhood a better place to raise children and makes people want to stay long after their children have grown.

However, Adam Rak and Nicole Bergeron of the San Carlos Elementary School District and Mark Olbert, Ron Collins and Cameron Johnson of the City Council insist that San Carlos is “built around” families with young children. Apparently, a majority of the City Council and the school board believe that retirees, parents with older children, couples without children and singles do not need natural areas or parks to enjoy. They appear to suggest that families without school-age children are to be regarded as second-class citizens.

This attitude is evident in the efforts by the school district and certain members of the City Council to confiscate this 40-year-old park from the Crestview neighborhood and give it to the school district, even though the school district has admitted that viable alternatives are available.

North Crestview Park was dedicated as a park in 1974 to offset the density in housing that resulted from the Highland Park Development and to ensure that residents in the Crestview neighborhood had sufficient access to park lands. Ironically, North Crestview Park was originally part of School Site 9 that the San Carlos Elementary School District sold to the developer for a profit.

Now the school district wants it back. The school district and certain members of the City Council justify confiscating a 40-year-old park by citing the need to prevent school overcrowding and help traffic flow. Yet Seth Rosenblatt, a member of the San Carlos Elementary School District Board of Trustees, has openly admitted that land is not the issue. Mr. Rosenblatt stated unequivocally that the school district has enough land, the problem is traffic. Yet the school district has done nothing and has no plans to address traffic issues at its current facilities. Watch the morning student dropoff at any of the schools in San Carlos and you will see car after car dropping off one child. The school district’s own traffic study finds that only 6 percent of parents with children at Arundel school, 7 percent of parents with children at Heather elementary and 20 percent of parents with children at Tierra Linda school carpool and that single student occupancy vehicles comprise 74 percent, 62.5 percent and 49 percent at Arundel, Heather and Tierra Linda, respectively.

Sorry, Crestview neighborhood, says the school district: North Crestview Park will be sacrificed so that the school district won’t have to address an issue of their own making and parents won’t be inconvenienced when they drop off their kids at school.

Can the school district and these members of the City Council be right? Can it be that two-thirds of the households of the Crestview neighborhood are not the “families” who count in San Carlos?

Alisande Rozynko is a 19-year resident of San Carlos and one of the founders of Save North Crestview Park. For more information about Save North Crestview Park go to www.plan4crestview.com.

 

 

Tags: school, district, carlos, crestview, children, percent,


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