Letter: Big city thinking doesn't work in small towns
Feb 20, 2014 | 1911 views | 2 2 comments | 35 35 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Many of us are terrified of the proposal to develop a new large shopping complex at Skypark. Safeway’s existing center has a high vacancy rate, and turn-over, as does Kings Village, and every other center in Scotts Valley.

Safeway has a very new building already, which is confounding as well. Why, in this or any other economy, does it seem reasonable when there is not sufficient market to sustain the existing supply of grocery outlets?

None of the businesses along Mount Hermon Road are doing well, they are only surviving. Blight is a great risk of moving this proposal forward. If there is any notion that this development will bring jobs, it does not fit the pattern. Because our economy is evolving so quickly, I urge you to take proposals very slowly, and not make big commitments.

Please remember, we are a collection of small towns. Limited by topography, we will never be a big city. We do not need big-city-type decision-making.

Historically, it only adds to our already high taxes and scarce resource problems in the long run. Scotts Valley has a long history of falling for sweet-talking developers and high-priced consultants who ultimately cost more than they contribute.

Skypark should remain open space with aquifer restoration capacity so you can have more water, not less.

Dave Livingston, Felton 

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Theryl McCoy
February 20, 2014
The problem with the current 'town center' (ie numerous strip malls) is that they are dated, auto-centric, and lack a civic identity. Scott's Valley is basically a suburb of Santa Cruz, or San Jose - we are not sure which. Where is the center? When I say I have to go to Scott's Valley my friends think that I mean I have to go to Kmart.

On the other hand, something that Santa Cruz desperately lacks is a plaza or park in the downtown area. If I just want to sit and have lunch and watch some grass grow or breathe some air I am outta luck on Pacific Ave. KEEP SHOPPING and DO NOT SIT are messages I get from downtown Santa Cruz.

I would like to see a nice quaint pedestrian friendly downtown Scott's Valley with a portion of open space right in the middle of it. If this were built I would spend all my money there.

February 20, 2014
Agreed 125%. What makes Scotts Valley such a nice place to live IS the open space, the sense of quiet and peace, the small-town environment. There are plenty of services here already ... I can get 99% of what I need here today.

This new mega-development would do nothing for the quality of life for the residents. Maybe the city council is dreaming about big dollar signs dancing, but I am afraid this is very short-sighted thinking indeed.

Please, think long-term. Scotts Valley is a wonderful small town. Let's keep it that way. Let someone else have the "ultimate" Safeway.

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