Posted 5/20/18: Umbrella Group Monthly Meeting Notes from May 16, 2018

The Coalition meets monthly with the City of San Rafael along with two other umbrella groups, Federation of San Rafael Neighborhoods and Terra Linda Residents Association (formerly Coalition of North San Rafael), to discuss activities, concerns and/or issues that are not readily addressed directly with the appropriate City agencies or where there is concern about the City’s approach. Items are placed on the agenda by the City and/or the three umbrella groups. This provides the Coalition with an opportunity to raise issues of particular interest to residents of our area.

If you have any suggestions regarding potential topics for these meetings, we urge you to let us know via the Coalition Board contact form. These meetings are open to the general public and are held the third Wednesday of each month at 5:30 pm (subject to change) in the large meeting room, 2nd floor, City Hall.

Vice Mayor John Gamblin ran the meeting. The subjects discussed were:

2040 General Plan:  The next meeting of the Steering Committee (2ndWednesday in June) will be a bus tour to view sites of upcoming development.  If residents would like to know the stops the bus will make, they can contact Barry Miller, Project Manager for General Plan 2040, at (415) 485-3423 or via the City Website.  The committee is currently working on tightening the guiding principles. Public input is needed now before the plan is set.  Some things to consider are where we want the City to be in 20 years, what we want to preserve and protect, and what will gathering places be like in the future, and the impact of sea level rise and changes in transportation.

Elimination of use of Glyphosate for Weed Control: There were questions about whether the City is using IPM (Integrated Pest Management) and discussion of the cost of manually removing weeds.  It was suggested that sources such as the Streets Team might be used.

Transit Center Relocation Planning:  Currently, three plans have been put forth by Golden Gate Transit.  The City wants a fourth plan.  Several concepts are under consideration:  housing above the transit center, a two-level transit center, use of the CalTrans space under the freeway for the transit center.  The City has asked for a study to determine the feasibility of these concepts. Once feasibility has been determined, the public can be asked their preference. There has been an additional suggestion of locating the transit center one block to the south of the current location at the former Glass and Sash property.  Mr. Gamblin said that this suggestion had been previously proposed and rejected as creating a dangerous pedestrian situation.  Golden Gate Transit will host a community meeting on June 12 at 5:30 at Whistlestop.

Update on the Possibility of Using San Rafael’s old Siren System in Emergencies: The problems in using sirens such as causing the information phone system to be overloaded were reiterated, but information was not available on whether the old system was still operable.  It was suggested that in order to avoid the problems related to sirens, the Japanese model of loudspeaker announcements could be used in order to deliver specific information rather than just a general alert of emergency.