Author Archives: Frank G

About Frank G

Sustainable Bicycle Advocate

Prose and Cons of new 2016 Bicycle Transportation Plan

The Cupertino Bicycle Pedestrian Commission recently had their new 2016 Bicycle Transportation Plan approved by City Council. This is by far the most ambitious Bicycle Transportation Plan ever put together in the city’s history… That said there are also some major deficiencies in this program. I will attempt to describe some of its features and vision then some of its major deficiencies which may have long term impacts upon making bicycle riding far more practical for most people in our city… Continue reading

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Raised Bicycle Lanes

Steve Hill on Next Door last year proposed having raised bicycle lanes at the level of sidewalks such as exist in parts of Europe.  I think this a very good idea on the busier streets of our city trafficked by … Continue reading

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A Bicycle Ride on the Stevens Creek Trail in Mountain View

Last week I had the opportunity to ride my bicycle on the Stevens Creek Train in Mountain View… Overall the trail was about 5 mile long and terminated at Shoreline where it intersected the Bay Trail, another very nice bicycle trail worth exploring later… The entire trail is paved and well maintained with a lot of wildlife, trees, and vegetation along the way. There are only a few spots where Steven Creek itself is visible until you approach the bay near Shoreline. It has the feel of being close to nature in spite of traffic noise, much nicer than the much shorter way overdeveloped Stevens Creek Trail in Cupertino. Continue reading

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Cupertino is Mostly about Education

You may well ask why I am talking about Education on a blog which is all about Bicycles and Growth? Well I’d like readers to understand the character of our city of Cupertino and one cannot really understand it without talking about Education. It is a large, perhaps the key, reason why people flock here to live… Continue reading

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Incentivizing Employees to Live Close to Work and Reduce Traffic

I have written about incentives that employers could pay employees for living near work in an earlier post.  I am breaking this out as a separate post because this could be a key strategy for reducing traffic around town. The … Continue reading

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Smart Growth for our Communities

I have been involve in the Smart Growth movement for about one and a half years now and have read numerous articles and subscribe to a news letter. Smart Growth isn’t about one way of doing things. It has its … Continue reading

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The Deadly Third Rail of Growth

At the heart of any community of people is housing, a place where people live and feel a sense of home and belonging, a comfortable and familiar place to rest and be oneself. But jobs are ultimately the reason people move from location to location in order to secure their livelihoods. Some may claim that they moved to a specific location for other reason such as schools or more affordable houses but in essence it is the prospects of a good job that bring them to the area… Continue reading

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Free Public Transportation for Cupetino

The benefits of public transportation are well documented.  It reduces traffic congestion and results in far less pollution and greenhouse gases than cars driving by individual drivers.  It also uses less fuel thus reducing our dependence upon fossil fuel today.  But … Continue reading

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Union Pacific Railroad Trail Update

In November of 2014 I wrote a short blog post titled Union Pacific Railroad Trail for Bicycling and Walking. This infrequently used railroad track owned by the Union Pacific Railroad runs a considerable distance through Cupertino. The railroad runs to the Lehigh Cement Plant just outside Cupertino where about once a day it bring in petroleum coke to use as fuel for its huge rotary furnace. An unofficial trail called the Union Pacific Trail runs from Prospect Road and Stelling Road to the South next to Saratoga 3.4 miles to North Foothill Blvd. to the North ending at the Lehigh Cement Plant. Continue reading

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Mitigating traffic around Tri-School Area

Close off Bubb Rd. on the Kennedy Middle School side of the road between Rainbow Rd. and McClellan Rd. for bicycle traffic only during Peak AM traffic hours. Make Bubb Rd. one way North bound for cars traffic on the west side of Bubb Rd opposite the school side of the road. This would still allow residents on the railroad side of Bubb to exit onto Bubb Rd. since they would not otherwise have a way out. Close off McClellan Rd. on the Monta Vista High School side of street for example between roughly near De Anza College to just past the curve in the road near Monta Vista High for bicycles traffic only during the same Peak AM traffic hours. Make McCellan Rd. one way West bound for cars traffic on the North side of the street away from the schools. Continue reading

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A Community Mall that Reduces Traffic the Larger it Grows – Thinking Outside the Box

I like thinking outside the box. It stimulates ideas that others have not thought about yet. But such thinking must also solve problems as well. It also acts as the springboard for other similar but original ideas. I have written extensively about the concepts of Smart Growth. The essence of this new concept in city planning is to promote sustainable growth while having minimal impact upon the environment. These environmental impacts come in the form of cities spreading out into undeveloped habitat and the emissions of greenhouse gases contributing to Climate Change.,, Continue reading

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A Building Moratorium between Developments to Control Growth

Vallco business and shopping mall, with its proposed 2,000,000 sq. ft. of office space next door to the new Apple campus has been submitted for the city’s approval which would bring in more than 10,000 employees. The Oaks and Goodyear Tire proposals have just been submitted for consideration. The Target property has been purchased by a developer and will soon have a proposal as will Marina, Cupertino Village and many others. This onslaught of new construction and growth in our small city in a short space of time brings with it concerns of exploding traffic congestion … Continue reading

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Vallco – Housing for Apple 2 Employees to Mitigate Traffic

My vision for Valco is as a self-contained community within our community of mixed use containing the following categories of development to meet the needs of this community. The goal is to mitigate traffic as much as possible and build an interdependent infrastructure to support this community… I base this community upon Smart Growth principles to reduce the use of cars as much as possible by placing everything conveniently within walking, biking, or public transportation distance for occupants of Vallco. There is enough diversity of land-use that provide for the needs of this community and profitability for the developer… Continue reading

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What We Can All Do to Help Save Our Planet

The primary culprit of Climate Change is excessive Climate Change (CO2) being released into the atmosphere from the insatiable appetite of Our Affluent Lifestyle. There is almost no part of our lives that does not impact Climate Change from the goods we consume to the conveniences we treasure. So there are plenty of opportunities for each of us to mitigate Our Individual impact. It isn’t only about government regulating carbon emissions. It is also about each of us doing our part to reduce the use of energy that is responsible for greenhouse gas emissions… Continue reading

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Need for More Bicycle Trails

A bicycle trail is a bicycle route that is largely away from the sights and sounds of car traffic. It is typically made of asphalt but can be made of concrete or dirt and gravel. Bicycle trails are typically shared with walkers, joggers, and hikers. Many bicycle trails go through undeveloped portions of cities such as long creeks, railroad tracks, parks, and open spaces. And occasionally they pass through residential area to connect portions of trail not possible along the natural route such as a narrow creek or blocked by private property. Continue reading

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Comments on the Stevens Creek Trail Feasibility Study Meeting 12/15/2015

I attended the Stevens Creek Trail Feasibility Study Meeting on December 15 in the hopes that there would be a nice and safe bicycle and walking trail from Cupertino all the way up to the Shoreline in Mountain view. A consultant hired by the joint Park and Recreation Commission and Bicycle Pedestrian Commission gave a presentation of the results of the 2-3 year Stevens Creek Trail feasibility study and presented a number of route options in three sections around neighborhoods where the trail had to deviate from the creek to residential streets due to restrictions or property lines preventing the trail from going along the creek. Continue reading

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Smart Growth – A Personal Perspective

I actually devised Smart Growth independently (my form of it) around the summer of last year while the General Plan Amendment (GPA) was undergoing scrutiny around the summer of 2014. I had by then determined that car traffic would limit Cupertino’s ability to sustain growth for long and was trying to solve this problem. It became clear that replacing cars with bicycles was the right path so I developed a long range Vision of what Cupertino would look like without cars. Continue reading

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More Sustained Growth for Cupertino with Smart Growth

Smart Growth was originally developed to help cities undergoing rapid growth to do it in a more sustained manner with sensitivity to its impact on the environment. This started as a European concept but was easier because they had relatively limited urban sprawl. It is like a suitcase in which you need to pack your belonging more efficiently into a fixed container as you buy more souvenirs along the way. Continue reading

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Why Bicycles are So Beneficial to Cupertino

Cupertino it the epitome of an urban sprawl community that is trying to morph into a urban city. However urban sprawl, ideal for car, is not so for public transportation or walking. Its many winding mazed roads and dead-end streets make public transportation impractical near most streets and walking laboriously long. In the process it is undergoing dramatic growth and severe growing pains. But unlike a person growing up with a genetic road-map of how to grow Cupertino has no road-map. So it is growing more like a cancer cell out of control. Continue reading

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12/15/2015 Four-Cities Coordinated Stevens Creek Trail Feasibility Presentation

I have mentioned the Four City Stevens Creek Trail study on several posts about bicycle trails. This particular trail will start on Stevens Creek Train next to McClellan Ranch and to all the way up to the Shore Line in Mountain View. There will be areas along this trail that will take you by residential areas because there is just not enough room along Stevens Creek to run a trail safely. The meeting about this is on:
Tuesday, December 15, 2015 @ 6:30 p.m.
Cupertino Community Hall, 10350 Torre Ave., Cupertino Continue reading

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