Pescadero Town Planning

The Pescadero Town Planning Initiative is a project of the Sustainable Pescadero Collaborative, a group of local residents, organizations, and businesses committed to an inclusive process to create a common vision for the future of our community.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THE PESCADERO TOWN PLANNING PROCESS

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THE PESCADERO TOWN PLANNING PROCESS

1 - Why are we doing this?

When we get together and agree on a direction for anything, we become more powerful. When we present potential funders — San Mateo County, nonprofit foundations, private donors — a well-thought-out plan for what we need and want as a community, chances are good that we can make it happen. This process can help us unite as a community, better see one another’s viewpoints, and build a stronger, more beautiful, more economically vibrant town.

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2 - Is it too late to submit ideas?

If you have ideas of ways to make your life in the Pescadero community better, please call the consultants Lois Fisher at (707) 544-1118 (English speakers) or Alfredo Vergara-Lobo (Spanish speakers) or Rita Mancera at Puente (650) 879-1691 by January 31st at the latest. Or if you want to attend the last remaining focus groups see the next question.

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3 - Will there be any more Focus Groups? Can I come to one of those?

Yes! If you haven’t yet attended one of these pre-gathering focus groups, please do:

  • English speakers focus groups: Tuesday January 29th at 4:30 and 6:30 pm at Downtown Local. Please contact Nicole Sillapere to let her know that you are coming at (415) 609-3719 or nicole@sillapere.com so that we can plan for space and refreshments.
  • The Spanish speakers focus groups: January 31 at La Sala, Pescadero Community Church from 6:30 to 8:00 pm.

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4 - Who is making the decisions about the priorities of our future (to be funded) Town Master Plan?

You are!

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5 - What kinds of ideas from local residents are we looking at?

Lots of folks are concerned about housing, parking, traffic safety, lighting, restrooms, a laundromat, recreation facilities, programs such as financial support for college students, services for seniors. And more, of course, some of which may surprise you!

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6 - Is anything off limits to talk about at the March 17 gathering?

We will not be addressing San Mateo County projects already underway such as the Firehouse relocation, dredging, or well construction at the High School.

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7 - Who is invited?

Anybody who lives in the Pescadero/Loma Mar area and any stakeholders such as people who work here, own property here or are involved in other capacities with the area.

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8 - Is this the same as the Town Planning Workshop we did in 2004?

This is a continuation of the work we started in 2004, but more ambitious. We hope to bring a lot more people to the table, and are better organized and better funded to open the process up to include more possible projects and ideas than last time. We have a diverse leadership team (the Town Planning Steering Committee) which will help us reach to all corners of our community.

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9 - Who is paying for this?

The Silicon Valley Community Foundation has funded a grant written by Puente de la Costa Sur to host a bilingual gathering of all Pescadero and Loma Mar residents, to find where there is consensus to move forward with ideas to make life easier, safer and healthier for local residents. Puente is donating money and the Steering Committee is donating their time towards this effort.

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10 - What does the funder expect to happen as a result of this process?

Puente will be submitting a report to Silicon Valley Community Foundation detailing how the process went and the results of the gathering. What they expect is that we will have successfully included the whole community, as much as is possible, in the process. They will also expect to see prioritized town planning goals based on what the town decided in the gathering so that the most popular projects can be moved forward in the next phase into a Town Master Plan. We will need to secure funding for this next phase.

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11 - What is Puente’s role?

As a successful local nonprofit, Puente was equipped to write and administer the grant, and has added its 20 years of background serving the South Coast to the project, along with key personnel to reach out and manage the logistics of bringing the Spanish and English-speaking focus groups and ‘The Gathering’ together. Puente is working in cooperation with a steering committee of community members, as well as The Pescadero Foundation, to produce and manage the project, and Puente will present the report that will be delivered to the funder, Silicon Valley Community Foundation and the Board of Supervisors.

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12 - What happens after the March 17, 2019 gathering?

A report on the process and its results will be written and presented to Silicon Valley Community Foundation in April. Our proposed next steps will be outlined in the report with a goal of using the Pescadero community’s most popular ideas to create a Town Master Plan. (This step has not yet been funded.) Through a series of future large gatherings, residents would decide where to locate top priorities such as trails, safe routes to school, parks, traffic calming measures and affordable housing. Although this Master Plan will not have official ‘County of San Mateo’ status, it will be valuable for non-profits and funders to see Pescadero residents’ top project priorities in their preferred locations in town. Additionally, at any time, the most popular ideas from local residents for improving our experience of living in Pescadero, as revealed in our ‘Gathering’ tallies, can become independent projects. Sustainable Pescadero, PMAC, The Pescadero Foundation and other local groups will move forward to fund design and building expenses for the priority projects that have been identified in the Town Planning process.

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13 - Why were these particular consultants hired?

Lois Fisher, of Fisher Town Design, worked with us in 2004, and brings a deep background in the community, its landscape and its challenges.

Her ‘Bio’: Lois Fisher, CNU, LEED-AP and LEED-ND is the president of Fisher Town Design and an Urban Designer. Her firm specializes in designing and zoning for walkable downtowns and neighborhoods as an alternative to suburban sprawl. Her Theatre district project in downtown Petaluma is a very successful urban design redevelopment project. She is an adjunct faculty member at Sonoma State University and teaches Urban Design there. Lois Fisher served for over 11 years on the Planning Commission for Windsor, helping to spearhead the development of the downtown there.

Alfredo Vergara-Lobo has worked with Puente on a number of community-building projects, and comes to us with expertise in bilingual social communication.

Alfredo Vergara-Lobo is a professional nonprofit consultant who builds the capacity of organizations, institutions, and communities as they form, grow, and thrive. As a bilingual, bicultural trainer and coach in English and Spanish and in the US and Latin America, Alfredo works with groups of people to facilitate their planning and development into future versions of themselves through various methodologies and frameworks. As a highly trained facilitator, he interacts with groups from a strengths perspective to assist them in designing and implementing initiatives while balancing process, relationships, and results.

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