Letter to the Editor: Save the bay from Cargill

Peter Calthorpe’s opinion piece (“Battle for the bay,” Insight, June 14) regarding Cargill/DMB’s proposed development on Redwood City’s salt ponds omits several key points.

He calls this a “smart-growth community,” but the recently released Greenbelt Alliance “Smart Spots for Growth” map doesn’t include these Cargill salt ponds as a place for smart growth.

Additionally, Redwood City has determined there is ample room to build needed housing downtown and along transit corridors. He calls the ponds a “factory without a roof” but omits the fact that these ponds are protected “open space” under a California Land Conservation Act contract.

Perhaps these omissions aren’t so surprising. Nowhere in his opinion piece does Mr. Calthorpe disclose that he’s on the DMB Redwood City Saltworks development team.

Mr. Calthorpe says we either develop on places like the salt ponds or be forced to pave over farmland. But developer DMB doesn’t see it that way. They’re hoping to do both: build luxury housing on former San Francisco Bay salt marsh in Redwood City and on agricultural lands in San Benito County. Peter Calthorpe represents Cargill/DMB’s for-profit viewpoints. David Lewis of Save the Bay represents the views of a widely respected nonprofit. Who has more credibility?

MATT LEDDY
Redwood City

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