gmhTODAY 20 gmhToday June July 2018 - Page 34

Chart shows the population growth of both cities from 1960 to the 2018 estimate. In 1960 Gilroy and Morgan Hill had a combined population of only 10,469. Fifty-eight years later the combined official population estimated is 103,244. annexed land approved by LAFCO, Morgan Hill is expected to run out of land for residential and commercial development in only five years! In Gilroy, in addition to LAFCO restrictions, there’s Measure H —an urban growth boundary that limits growth, Gilroy expects to run out of available industrial and commercial space in the next few years. Let’s look at General Plans and their influence on development. Gilroy had just completed a general plan for 2020 before Measure H put in place numerous growth restrictions. Consequently, Gilroy is going through the process of revamp- ing the General Plan with a 2040 target. This year the RDO process was suspend- ed pending additional studies for land use in the new proposed 2040 General Plan. Morgan Hill’s General Plan runs through 2035 and is already consistent with the new growth directives in Measure S. little or no residential or commercial de- velopment further down the line. Gilroy has a compact set of boundaries and will need to focus on infill projects and an expansion of industrial or commercial land. Morgan Hill, with its more spread out footprint, will need to develop plans and obtain LAFCO approvals, to keep up with its growth needs. • Morgan Hill has done a good job of addressing rental and affordable housing needs. Gilroy has a start with the Alexander Street and Carriage Hill developments. But the challenges of building more rentals and affordable housing continue. The bottom line is that those of us who are fortunate to live in the South Santa Clara Valley have a little bit of paradise here but growth is inevitable and how we manage our growth is paramount to our continued quality of life. The BANANA people who say “Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anyone” or NIMBY people with their “Not in My Back Yard” are doing a disservice to themselves and their chil- dren, the next generation. We have a lot to preserve but also a future to shape. • New projects will need to continue to build in amenities that address community and neighborhood in- volvement in order to be successful. City governments need to get creative to address existing and future budgetary needs. Somewhere out there is a way • Growth is complicated and takes to create more jobs locally (thereby time—a lot of time. Large projects are producing income for the cities) and not going to sprout up overnight. Most reduce the number of cars heading north are several years in the allocation and every day, which is estimated at 14,000 planning phase before they reach the every work day (thereby improving the building and selling phase. quality of life for many residents). Some point to much better telecommunication • While Gilroy and Morgan Hill have a bandwith as part of the solution to number of projects in progress, there is these problems. What does all this mean? 34 GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN JUNE/JULY 2018 gmhtoday.com