Letter: Rebuttal to Kammen Letter

This is in rebuttal to a letter from Daniel Kammen to the Culver City Council.  The letter was in support of the Council agenda to replace R-1 zoning with 4 unit housing on each lot.   

Mr. Kammen’s focus is on: 

  • Affordable housing 
  • Reducing per capita emissions 
  • Diversity and sustainability 
  • Incremental housing infill in every neighborhood 
  • Accessible below-market rates for housing 
  • Skyrocketing home prices excluding low income and working class families 
  • The need for a comprehensive citywide strategy  

Curiosity lead me to wonder what lifestyle Mr. Kammen had chosen for himself.  Was he living in the urban infill he advocates for us? 

Internet research indicates Mr. Kammen lives on a hill above Oakland, CA, with a view of the San Francisco Bay. His R-1 lot of 8,800 square feet accommodates a 3,275 square foot home.  The home has 5 bedrooms, 4.5 baths and a value of $2.5 million. This home abuts to a 500 Acre park.  

It is my view, as well as some expressed in previous editions of the Culver City News, that the preservation of R-1 zones in our city allows for more affordable housing, keeps vegetation in place and that infill will not reduce per capita emissions. 

Our present infrastructure will not support thousands of new residents in proposed multi-unit housing.  We have little water, sewers are at capacity, and we are asked to conserve limited electricity.  

Perhaps a comprehensive citywide strategy for housing is needed, but this takes years to develop.  I urge the City Council to celebrate our ethnically diverse neighborhoods and carefully plan for the future.   

—Peter Stern 

Culver City

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