SAN CARLOS: The City of Good Business?

Mark Olbert

I attended an interest group meeting today with the Mayor of San Carlos, Mark Olbert. Nice guy, enjoyed meeting him. The highlights were that the City has bounced back pretty well from its previous budget woes by hiring out some of its services such as law enforcement and fire fighting.

What surprised me was the expected growth for the City in the coming decade. I guess California is pressuring communities to create a better mix of residential and commercial spaces within their own city boundaries to minimize commutes and reduce traffic congestion.

San Carlos anticipates that it will add 1.5 million square feet of commercial space over the next 10 years. This will all be primarily built east of El Camino; between Old County and Industrial Avenue, on either side of Brittan.

The challenge here is this additional commercial space is anticipated to create 6,000 jobs, but there is no clear plan yet on housing. Some 100 town homes are planned to be built at the old Black Mountain Water cite on Alameda, but that’s a drop in the bucket. The schools currently have lower than expected enrollment, but that is by 100 students, not sure how 6,000 new jobs will impact the local schools? Either San Carlos somehow comes to terms with how to create additional housing or our bad freeways are about to get worse. Let’s hope someone has a bright idea soon.

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