If the water and traffic flows do we need to know more?
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If the water and traffic flows do we need to know more?

I usually meet a group of friends in the morning at the local coffee shop. There we solve the problems of the world. However, one morning I was kind of surprised when I asked them about things happening in and around town. Most of them did not know what was going on here in Foster City. I asked them about the recent school bond, or about some of the new restaurants that recently opened here. I also inquired if they knew anything about the 15 acre (from now on called Foster Square) and what was going to go be built there?. There was very little knowledge of those subjects.

Now to whom should I apply blame for the lack of knowledge? Was it lack of interest? Was it the lack of communication? Was it me?

They all did agree however that Foster City was a great place in which to live. That it was clean, safe and had great parks. That's true but it seemed that their primary concern was that the lights turned on when they flipped the switch and the water came out of the faucet when they turned on the handle.

I guess we, the City Council and City staff, have done such a good job of creating this idyllic city that folks are satisfied and have become a little complacent.

Folks, it's time to take a few minutes to look around Foster City, even if you have lived here so long you think you know every nook and cranny because in the past couple of months we've gone through a wonderful metamorphosis. We've opened two wonderful yet quirky sandwich shops; Ikes of San Francisco and Sandwich Monkey. Also opened is a full service restaurant where breakfast, lunch and dinner are served. It's called The Corner Bakery Cafe. Please take an opportunity to check them out. By supporting our local businesses, we support our local economy and ensure our ongoing prosperity.

The former SONY buildings on either side of Metro Center are being remodeled and will soon have some exciting new tenants. And our good friends at Gilead are set to expand their campus and will soon have around one million square feet of office and research space in the north part of Foster City. And don't forget to check out The Plaza- those new luxury apartments on north east side of town. It's almost like living in a resort.

But let me save the best for last. The development of the last and most valuable piece of developable property is soon to become a reality. Foster Square will become a mixed use senior housing development. In November and December 2013, the City Council approved the overall project along with the sale and the purchase agreement for the 15-acre site. Now the Planning Commission is holding study sessions to discuss the design, layout, signage as well as the landscaping of the various components of the project. The Commission will hear from the developers, architects and retail experts so that this prime piece of property will end up to be something all of us here in Foster City will be glad to enjoy and show off to our friends.

But, the final shape and look will come from you, the residents who will work, live and eat at Foster Square. This is going to be YOUR city's crowning glory and I want YOU to be an integral part of the planning!

There will be additional study sessions that I want you to attend to give the Commission your input, comments and ideas. Tell them what kind of retail you would patronize. Do you want coffee shops? How about a bakery? Maybe a nice sit down restaurant? How about a Taqueria or Pizza Parlor?

The "ball is in your court." It's up to you. This is your chance to make a mark. Please attend the study sessions when they occur. Watch for the advertising in the papers and the marquee or sign up for free to receive an e-mail whenever the Foster Square development is discussed. I would be happy to help put you on our list server so you'll get automatic notification of upcoming meetings. Let me know if I could answer your questions or concerns. My email is sokamoto@fostercity.org.

Council Corner

January 22, 2014
If the water and traffic flows do we need to know more?

City Hall - 610 Foster City Blvd.
Foster City, CA 94404
(650) 286-3200