The city took notes from last month’s High Speed rail meeting.  I have included them here with indented comments added in bold or red text.

High Speed Rail Workshop Notes

Thursday, April 22, 2010

1. Meeting

Attendance = 30 residents, 5 or 6 speakers from GESC

Note to city staff and city council.  There were only two representatives from GESC present and only one provided verbal comments.   The other people who commented on the issues were east side and west side residents.

Lots of interaction/positive comments about Open House & Break with HSR Staff

2. Transit Village

How does High Speed Rail project relate to Transit Village?

Can all 5 of the HSR construction options be built if the Transit Village is already in place?

Would prefer to minimize impact on Old County Road rather than minimize impact on Transit Village or JPB owned “vacant land”

Transit Village proposal will move parking lot further away from CalTrain station – discouraging CalTrain and HSR use

What is the relationship between the HSR EIR & the Transit Village EIR?

What is the next step in the Transit Village project?

It is important to note that Mr. Doty had not taken into account how he would run Caltrain while accommodating the SCTV Apartment Tower complex.  Mr. Doty was only taking into consideration the engineering possibility of being able to run 4 tracks of HSR and Caltrain.  He acknowledged that the HSR above ground tracks might need to encroach on Old County Road, but that he hadn’t taken a close look at the specifics.

He also acknowledged that he had not taken into consideration where he would put the temporary Caltrain tracks while HSR was being built, that Old County Road might be used for running the Caltrain temporary tracks, and that properties and businesses along Old County Road would likely be taken via eminent domain if he had to account for the SCTV Apartment Complex.

Everyone needs to realize that businesses were torn down along El Camino to accommodate the building of the berm and the temporary Caltrain tracks.

Building an apartment complex on top of the railroad right of way which would them force eminent domain of Old County road for Caltrain and High Speed Rail is the height of either bureaucratic arrogance or negligence, I’m not sure which.

3. CalTrain Station

Will steps be taken so the HSR project minimizes impacts on the Historic CalTrain Station?

4. Cost of HSR Project

Who pays the difference in cost if a construction method is selected that costs more than the money available for the HSR route on the Peninsula?

5. Viaduct Options

Can all 4 tracks (HSR & CalTrain) be constructed on a Viaduct?

Would this include removing the existing berm in San Carlos for CalTrain?

Can this be done with CalTrain still running?

Who owns the land under a viaduct?

What could be built under this area – restaurants, dog park, green space?

6. Construction Options & Approach

Will a shoofly be needed for some or all of the 5 HSR design options?

How will HSR be built – all at once or in stages?

Why wasn’t a route along Hwy 101 or Hwy 280 selected?

7. Economic Benefits

Will the Economic benefits of the HSR project to San Carlos be studied?

8. Landscaping & Appearance

Landscaping was put in during the Holly Street Grade Sep project to absorb train noise

Will the HSR project design include landscaping along the project route?

9. Project Simulations

What would a trip from my home to CalTrain to HSR to L.A. or Merced be like?

Will HSR put any simulations of the proposed system in San Carlos on the Internet?

What would the routes be like? How long?

This will help the public understand “what we are buying” with this project

It would be like the  web site for High Speed Rail

10. Parking

How will parking work with HSR?

You can’t park in the San Carlos CalTrain lot more than 24 hours, so a trip to L.A. with HSR doesn’t work unless you park at a HSR station.  That defeats the “feeder” concept of the local CalTrain line/stations linking to HSR.

11. Overhead Wires

Will the HSR system require overhead wires and the boxy frames?

Bob Doty: What is required is a post and wires.  German HSR now uses a white designer post with holes and curves.  Minimizes visual impact – sort of an optical illusion.  We could consider something like that for HSR here.


April 22nd Workshop Notes