County considers action on Emerald Hills changes

County officials say they will consider dropping proposed updates to design guidelines for the Emerald Hills neighborhood if enough residents oppose them.

The Emerald Hills Homeowners Association is urging a series of updated limits on home construction and renovation, such as “less boxy” design of second-story additions, recommendations for theplacement of solar panels and discouragement of solid fences. The area’s design guidelines were last amended in 1990.

A group of homeowners who oppose some of the guidelines, however, have been gathering signatures since Father’s Day weekend to protest the update.

Since then, they have gathered “many hundreds” of signatures and hoped to collect 1,000 by the end of June, according to resident Michael Mangini, who has accused the neighborhood association of becoming the local “style police.”

The neighborhood has about 1,750 homes.

The petition could go a long way toward defeating the changes, according to Mark Duino, a planner with San Mateo County.

The county oversees design review of Emerald Hills homes because the neighborhood is located in an unincorporated part of Redwood City.

“If a majority of the community doesn’t want this, then we need to know that,” Duino said.

Meanwhile, Emerald Hills Neighborhood Association president Sallie Martin said Mangini’s group is misrepresenting the proposed changes.

She says he is protesting a number of things — such as height and size limits — contained in the existing guidelines.

After a tense county-run meeting held to discuss the changes May 31, she is asking Mangini and others to meet with her and establish some kind of consensus — or truce.

“We’d like to start progress talks,” Martin said. “I’m going on faith that it will happen.”

A survey posed by the neighborhood association received 645 responses.

Of those, a majority supported the design updates.

But opponents maintain that the rules will prevent residents from building their dream homes.

“That’s probably not the intention of what these things were designed to do, but that’s what’s happening,” Mangini said. “So before we heap more on, let’s go back and fix it, streamline it, make it better.”</p>

bwinegarner@examiner.com

Bay Area NewsLocal

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

San Francisco lacks housing data that would let it track rental vacancies and prices. New legislation is seeking to change that.<ins> (Photo by Joel Angel Jurez/2016 Special to S.F. Examiner)</ins>
Landlords blast proposal to require annual report on rentals as invasion of privacy

Housing inventory could give city better data on housing vacancies, affordability

Dr. Grant Colfax, director of the San Francisco Department of Public Health. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SF moves into purple tier, triggering curfew and business shutdowns

San Francisco moved into the state’s purple COVID-19 tier Saturday, requiring The… Continue reading

University of San Francisco head coach Todd Golden coaches his team on defense during a 2019 gameat War Memorial Gymnasium on the campus of the University of San Francisco. (Ryan Gorcey / S.F. Examiner)
Stunner in Bubbleville: USF upsets fourth-ranked Virginia

Less than 48 hours removed from a loss to a feeble UMass… Continue reading

Health care workers would be the first group in the state to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. (Go Nakamura/Getty Images/TNS)
Hope on the way: Here’s what to know about California’s COVID-19 vaccine plan

The first batch of doses could hit the state as soon as early December

The Big Game was played Friday at Memorial Stadium in Berkeley. (Shutterstock)
Stanford blocks extra point to stun Cal, win 123rd Big Game 24-23

The 123rd edition of the Big Game featured a number of firsts.… Continue reading

Most Read