Thursday, July 03, 2008

MOSPR ad absurdem

If Mountain View has ever made a more ironically misguided decision than Tuesday's vote to hold the new train depot tenant responsible for creating new parking spaces, I can not imagine what it might have been.

Personally, I can't see myself interrupting my commute for "artisan cheese," shrimp scampi and oysters, but I suppose it's better use than the train museum idea readers used to suggest to me.

As embarrassing as it was to see the place lying empty for the first six years after the city spent millions to build the plaza, imposing $54,000 of extra costs for minimum off-street parking requirements is especially indefensible.


Anonymous said...

I figure a liberal like you would be all for making businesses pay more to the public.

I'm guessing it's more the idea of making it easier to drive that you're opposed to.

Anonymous said...

er, i don't think that's what the council did.

Nemesis of Evil said...

I heard from a council member that believed the city as landlord was going to be contributing taxpayer money to the parking fund. That does not seem to be what the Voice story says, and it certainly wasn't clear -- to me, at least -- from the staff proposal (a soft copy of which seems to be temporarily lost in the ether), but perhaps Anon can enlighten us.

However, the folly of this decision is the same whether the landlord subsidizes the parking (with taxpayer money) or makes the tenant cover the cost directly. Levying a tax on the use of a publicly-owned train depot makes use of the train depot more expensive. That's not necessarily a problem in itself. The problem, and the irony, is in using the revenue from the tax on the train depot in order to make driving downtown more cost-competitive with taking the train.